Happy Friday, Austin! Ready for some tech stories? Let’s do this.
Four huge tech companies, four positive earnings reports
Woe be the tech journalist who had to cover four simultaneous earnings drops at the same time (that’s why I write about silly gadgets). Reports from Amazon, Alphabet/Google, Intel and Microsoft went out Thursday evening and the news was quite good, a “Blowout” as the Wall Street Journal described it. You can read more about Amazon’s results from our own Sebastian Herrera. Bottom line is Amazon has gotten much bigger after its Whole Foods purchase and is now the nation’s second-largest employer behind Wal-Mart with about 540,000 workers. Alphabet, meanwhile, had a 24 percent increase in revenue over last year’s results. And even with the slowdown in PCs, Intel still had modest growth. And continuing a trend, Microsoft had strong sales with Office 365 and its Azure cloud offerings. It was a good day to be a major tech company.
Amazon’s pharmacy news
Speaking of Amazon, the retail giant is also getting into the wholesale pharmacy business at the same time that CVS Health is looking to acquire Aetna for $66 billion. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that Amazon has obtained pharmacy licenses in 12 states, with an eye toward the drug-delivery business. It’s unclear whether Amazon plans to build out such a business itself or if an acquisition of a company such as Express Scripts might be in the works.
Pixel 2 problems to be fixed with software upgrades
Google did acknowledge this week that problems some users are having with its new Pixel 2 smart phones, including a clicking noise on the Pixel 2 and some screen color issues on the Pixel 2 XL will be addressed with software updates and with a warranty extension for buyers. The warranty will now last two years instead of one on those devices.
Spotify pivot to video leads to pivot away from it
Spotify, which is very good at music, is apparently not so great at video. An ambitious video initiative to create original video programming is reportedly being shelved and rethought by the company. The company expanded its offering to include podcasts, but so far video has not done much for the streaming-music service.
And now, David S. Pumpkins...
This is not strictly tech-related, but since we already told you about some scary websites and scary videogames you should check out for Halloween, let’s just watch this teaser for the upcoming “SNL”-spinoff cartoon of a character originated by Tom Hanks and hope the special is much better than this (it does include the original sketch, though, so that’s something:
Not satisfied? Go read this oral history of the creation of the character.
News on Open Source is free and unlimited. Access to the rest of 512tech.com comes with an American-Statesman digital subscription, which also includes myStatesman.com and the ePaper edition. Subscribe at statesman.com/subscribe.