Amazon, Inc. (AMZN) Tops Earnings Expectations After Hours

Overall revenues for Amazon rose 38 per cent from past year to $60.5 billion.

Compared to the same quarter in 2016, AWS saw a hike in revenue of 45%, thoroughly trouncing the $3.5bn it made a year earlier.

The Seattle-based company's profit reached $1.9 billion during the fourth quarter, which included the annual holiday shopping boom, almost doubling its year-end profits from 2016.

Amazon's results were boosted by a provisional tax benefit for the impact of the US Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 of approximately $789m (£554m).

For the current quarter to March, the e-commerce giant projected sales in the range of US$47.75 billion to US$50.75 billion, which would represent increase of up to 42 percent from a year ago.

Amazon's AWS revenue came in at $5.11 billion during the period, topping the $4.97 billion that analysts polled by FactSet were calling for. "Other" came in at about $1.7 billion, and subscription services at almost $3.2 billion.

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Although Amazon didn't provide details of Alexa sales, Chief Executive Jeff Bezos said 2017 projections were "very optimistic, and we far exceeded them".

There are more than 30,000 skills for Alexa; 4,000 plus smart-home devices from 1,200 unique brands; Alexa use on Fire TV rose nine times year-over-year, and music listening time on Alexa was three times higher this holiday season compared with the past. It was due to its cloud business, Amazon Web Services (AWS).

In Alphabet's earnings call Thursday, Google CEO Sundar Pichai announced that Google Cloud business - which encompasses the cloud platform and G Suite - is now bringing in $1 billion per quarter and that the company believes it "is the fastest growing major public cloud provider in the world". The firm is focusing on cutting prices and many Whole Foods stores feature automated lockers where customers can pick up their Amazon orders. It equips warehouses with robots, builds new data centers, invents new products and updates devices like its voice-activated Echo digital speaker, which Amazon sees as key to getting a foothold in customers' homes and vehicles. The company has reported $35.7 billion in revenue in the initial quarter of 2017.

E-commerce giant Inc.'s massive investment in India has become a drag on its margins, with the loss on its worldwide business more than doubling in 2017.

He also said that the company's Prime membership service has been a huge success in the country with an adoption rate that even surpassed that of the US. Not for nothing is the company earning infamy for squeezing competitors by running on low profit margins.