Microsoft Sales Lifted by Cloud Computing


Microsoft’s overall revenue last quarter rose to $28.92 billion, up 12 percent from the same period a year earlier, as everything from its Office applications business and Xbox gaming console — both buoyed by cloud computing services — showed growth.

The company reported a net loss, including the tax charge, of $6.3 billion, or 82 cents a share, down from net income of $6.27 billion, or 80 cents a share, a year earlier. Without the tax charge though, Microsoft said it earned 96 cents a share.

Microsoft’s shares dropped about 1 percent in after-hours trading following the release of the results, though both revenue and the adjusted earnings figure were significantly better than Wall Street forecasts.

One of the company’s oldest businesses, Office, saw its commercial revenue grow 10 percent in the quarter. Even the number of consumers who subscribe to a cloud version of the application suite, called Office 365, rose to 29.2 million from 24.9 million during the same period a year earlier.

The company’s gaming revenue jumped 8 percent, primarily as a result of hardware sales resulting from the introduction of a new console, Xbox One X.

Microsoft and other big tech companies like Intel and Apple have been struggling over the past several months to mitigate a critical security flaw — known as “Spectre” — which exists at the chip level and has no simple patch.

Microsoft has attempted to mitigate the flaw without dinging performance, but security experts like Paul Kocher, one of the researchers who discovered the flaw last year, say Microsoft’s solutions still do not sufficiently address all the ways it could be used by an attacker.

In a phone interview, Microsoft chief financial officer, Amy Hood, said Microsoft has not yet seen a financial impact from the recent critical security flaws.

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