Oct 25, 2023 - Economy

Microsoft says AI investments already paying off

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Illustration: Maura Losch/Axios

Wall Street is now laser-focused on how companies like Google and Microsoft will make money from AI.

Why it matters: After nearly a year of hyping up AI, tech giants are facing greater scrutiny of their plans to launch expensive generative AI products and services.

Driving the news: Alphabet's stock got a thrashing after the company yesterday reported disappointing growth in its cloud business.

  • Shares closed down 9.5%, its steepest decline since March 16, 2020.

At the same time, Microsoft's stock closed up 3.1% after the company delivered a report showing the strength of its cloud unit Azure, thanks in part to its artificial intelligence bet.

Between the lines: Wall Street wants clarity on how Alphabet will make money from AI — in stark contrast to Microsoft, which says its AI investments are already bearing fruit.

  • "About three percentage points of Azure's growth came from generative A.I. products ... more than the company had told investors to expect," the NYT notes.
  • Microsoft also said it has 7,000 more customers of its Azure OpenAI platform than it did in July.

Go deeper: Generative AI's hype explosion

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