Here are the internal documents that Congress used to grill Big Tech

Apple CEO Tim Cook speaks during the House Judiciary Subcommittee hearing in D.C.
Credit
Mandel Ngan  AFP  Bloomberg

Apple CEO Tim Cook speaks during the House Judiciary Subcommittee hearing in D.C. Credit Mandel Ngan AFP Bloomberg

The logos of Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google in a combination photo from Reuters files.

Perhaps the most damning episodes of the hearing involved disclosure of internal company emails that appeared to support the politicians' contention that the big tech companies used their size to squash competitors.

The California tech giant saw a modest increase in iPhone sales, with more significant rise for accessories and services such as its apps and digital content.

"We're working to help people, businesses and communities in these uncertain times", said Alphabet and Google CEO Sundar Pichai.

Analyst Daniel Ives at Wedbush Securities said the results show momentum for Apple as it readies its new iPhone 12.

But for Bay Area tech giants Alphabet, Apple, and Facebook, along with Seattle-based Amazon, it was a pretty stellar quarter overall, with Facebook reporting a 98-percent jump in profit, and Amazon reporting a 40-percent jump in sales year over year.

"It was another very unusual quarter", said Jeff Bezos, the richest person in the world and founder and major shareholder of Amazon. Amazon is now one of the largest employers in the United States. The Google search engine and other mostly free tools, for example for conferences in the Corona crisis, won many new users.

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"Many of those changes were to Amazon's advantage as shoppers became increasingly digital and went online to fulfil their various needs". Net profit doubled from the same period previous year, to a record of $5.2bn.

Over at Facebook, daily active users were up to 1.79bn on average, growing 12 per cent YoY, while monthly active users also grew 12 per cent to reach 2.7bn.

Williamson said she believes Instagram "has played a major role in Facebook's ability to withstand the effects of the pandemic", even though details from the platform were not disclosed.

During the earnings report, the company reported $193.82bn in cash on hand, which is an increase from the previous quarter.

Revenues dipped two percent to 38 billion USA dollars, as chief financial officer Ruth Porat said: "We continue to navigate through a hard global economic environment".

Shares of Amazon.com Inc., Facebook Inc., Apple Inc. and Alphabet Inc. built on already-torrid rallies after each reported earnings or revenue that crushed analyst estimates. And, as the Times notes, following a week in which multiple tech companies were answering questions before Congress, their financial situations underscore "how regulatory scrutiny remains more background noise and a distraction for them rather than an imminent threat to their businesses". Politically, they could reinforce suspicions that growth in US technology providers has gotten unhinged. "Some need to be broken up, all need to be heavily regulated".

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