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The world's most valuable company begins with an A, but it's no longer Apple

Alphabet, Google’s parent company, is now the world’s most valuable company.

It may have restructured, but classic Google products like search and advertising are driving Alphabet's profits forward.
It may have restructured, but classic Google products like search and advertising are driving Alphabet's profits forward.
Image: AP Photo/Jeff Chiu

APPLE IS NO longer the most valuable company in the world after Alphabet, Google’s parent company, surpassed it.

The company made a profit of $4.9 billion (€4.48 billion) in the last quarter of 2015, and saw its value rise to $568 billion (€520 billion) in after-hours trading, beating Apple’s value of $535 billion (€490 billion).

This was Alphabet’s first earnings report after its major overhaul back in August, separating businesses like Google and YouTube from its ‘Other Bets’ business, which includes experimental projects like self-driving cars, its internet delivering balloons project Google Loon and Google X.

Its spending on ‘Other Bets’ increased significantly in the past year, where it made a loss of $3.56 billion (€3.2 billion) in the last three months of 2015.

Online advertising, however, still makes up the bulk of its revenue, where it made $19.36 billion (€17.74 billion) in that quarter while total revenue was $21.32 billion (€19.5 billion), an 18% increase year-on-year.

Alphabet now employs almost 62,000 people worldwide.

Growing rivalry 

India Alphabet Google Google CEO Sundar Pichai said that seven of its products now have more than a billion users. Source: AP Photo/Manu Fernandez

After Alphabet’s earning call, Facebook decided to announce how WhatsApp now has one billion users signed up to its service, something it was originally hoping would happen at the start of the year.

During the call, Google’s CEO Sundar Pichai mentioned how seven of its products now have more than a billion monthly active users including Search, Android, Chrome, YouTube, Google Play and now Gmail.

Also, he took a shot at Facebook’s video service and the news its users watch 100 million hours daily saying that on YouTube, people watch hundreds of millions of hours of video every day. He didn’t give specific figures, but it’s believed it ranges around 500 million hours of video a day.

A similar incident happened last week where Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced it was working on an AI that would be able to play Go, the ancient Chinese game. Later on the same day, the Google-owned company DeepMind announced it developed an AI that defeated the European champion in the same game.

Alphabet’s rivalry with Apple continues to grow since both own the two biggest smartphone platforms out there. Despite having more than a billion people using Android, recent court documents revealed how Google paid Apple more than $1 billion to keep its search bar on iOS.

Read: Bill Gates confesses: ‘I memorised license plates to keep track of employees’ >

Read: Google Chrome will be getting itself a makeover >

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About the author:

Quinton O'Reilly

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