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Apple, Facebook report increase in earnings at the end of 2020

Apple, Facebook report increase in earnings at the end of 2020
© Greg Nash, Getty Images

Apple and Facebook reported strong earnings from the last three months of 2020 on Wednesday when they released their quarterly earnings reports.

Facebook reported a total revenue of $28 billion in the last three months of 2020, a 33 percent increase from the same period last year. 

"We had a strong end to the year as people and businesses continued to use our services during these challenging times," Facebook CEO Mark ZuckerbergMark Elliot ZuckerbergHillicon Valley: Apple approves Parler's return to App Store | White House scales back response to SolarWinds, Microsoft incidents | Pressure mounts on DHS over relationship with Clearview AI Facebook unveils new audio features Hillicon Valley: Biden administration sanctions Russia for SolarWinds hack, election interference MORE said in a statement. "I'm excited about our product roadmap for 2021 as we build new and meaningful ways to create economic opportunity, build community and help people just have fun."

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Apple reported an all-time record revenue of $111.4 billion in the last three months of 2020, up 21 percent from the previous year. 

“This quarter for Apple wouldn’t have been possible without the tireless and innovative work of every Apple team member worldwide,” Apple CEO Tim Cook said in a statement. “We’re gratified by the enthusiastic customer response to the unmatched line of cutting-edge products that we delivered across a historic holiday season.” 

It is Apple’s first quarterly report released since launching its iPhone 12 mini, iPhone 12, iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max products near the end of last year. 

Facebook attributed its strong last quarter in part to a shift toward online commerce. 

Throughout 2020, when much of the world was pushed to connect virtually amid coronavirus lockdowns, Facebook saw an average of 1.84 billion daily active users — an 11 percent increase from the year before. 

Facebook said it faces challenges regarding ad targeting in the new year, specifically citing Apple’s new iOS 14 update. Apple’s new operating system limits the reach of targeted ads, and Facebook has repeatedly criticized the move. 

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Microsoft on Tuesday also reported an increase in revenue. The company reported $3.1 billion in revenue, up 17 percent from the same period last year. 

“What we have witnessed over the past year is the dawn of a second wave of digital transformation sweeping every company and every industry,” Satya Nadella, chief executive officer of Microsoft, said in a statement. “Building their own digital capability is the new currency driving every organization’s resilience and growth. Microsoft is powering this shift with the world’s largest and most comprehensive cloud platform.”

Amazon and Google are set to announce their quarterly financial reports next week, and Twitter is set to do so the week after.