Tech Giants Earnings Show Absolute Dominance

( Earnings released by Big Tech companies recently show just how powerful a few companies are.

Some small entities of the largest technology companies, in fact, way outpace other large tech companies in terms of revenue.

Last week, Facebook, Microsoft, Amazon, Apple and Alphabet all reported their March-quarter earnings. Some of the revenue they showed is actually quite stunning.

YouTube, which is owned by Alphabet — Google’s parent company — is on pace to generate revenue that would equal that of Netflix. For Google, YouTube makes up only a very small part of its business, too. YouTube only accounts for 13% of Google’s overall advertising revenue.

Alphabet itself earned $4.5 billion from the value of investments it has made into start-up companies over the last 10 years. As those companies raised new rounds of higher valuations or gone public, Alphabet has benefited significantly.

Not many people think of Amazon as an advertising company, but that wing of the business generated almost $7 billion in revenue during the quarter. That amount is almost seven times as much as Twitter generates altogether.

At the same time, though, advertising is only a small part of what Amazon does. In fact, its total revenue for the quarter was more than $108 billion.

Another comparison is Amazon Web Services, a cloud computing wing of the business. It generated more revenue in its first quarter than Oracle did during its third quarter, which ended back on February 28.

LinkedIn, which is owned by Microsoft, generated more than $3 billion in revenue for advertising over the last year. That’s more than both Pinterest and Snap.

LinkedIn advertising is only a small portion of what Microsoft does, though. Over the last nine months, for instance, Microsoft has generated more than $121 billion in revenue.

The gadget business for Apple earned more than $7.8 billion in revenue for the quarter. That division includes items such as AirPods, Apple TV and the Apple Watch. It’s only responsible for less than 9% of Apple’s overall sales, but it’s more than the entirety of HP’s laptop business.

Sales for Apples iPhones, meanwhile, generated more revenue than all of Microsoft did.

Typically speaking, it’s very hard for large companies to generate huge growth rates. The thinking goes that it’s easier to generate $50 million than it is $500 million. So, it’s more difficult to grow 40%, for example, if you’re starting from $1 billion than it is if you’re starting from $10 million.

These Big Tech giants are bucking that trend significantly, though. And the reason is because they have so many different divisions that each have so many millions of customers.

Amazon has millions of customers for AWS and for advertising, while also bringing in money from grocery stores and online retail, for example.

This is great for these Big Tech companies, but it’s also at the crux of why the federal government is looking into their activities. Google, especially, is facing accusations of breaking rules of competitive balance and anti-trust.

Time will tell whether the government does anything about it, or whether these Big Tech companies continue to wield an unbalanced amount of power and influence.