May 1, 2020
Source: Steve Jurvetson, Wikimedia Commons
Good morning! This Friday, Apple and Amazon's earnings offer insight into the ad market and China's recovery, book digitization might speed up, and Quibi's still got problems. Want Index in your inbox each morning? Subscribe here.
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You've probably seen the headline figures from yesterday's big earnings reports: Both Amazon and Apple beat revenue expectations, with Apple also beating on profit. But buried within the releases are some interesting nuggets that tell us a little more about how tech's doing.
We also got a look at China's recovery, which seems to be going remarkably well.
For Amazon, meanwhile, ad revenue is on the up.
The biggest takeaway is that everyone is scared to predict the future.
The Wall Street Journal had a great piece yesterday on the many troubles at Quibi. It's got a bunch of juicy details: Jeffrey Katzenberg thinks they underestimated the challenge of launching Quibi in a global pandemic; it's got 3 million downloads but around 1 million registered users; and it was planning on losing $550 million this year even before COVID hit. By the end of the year, it now expects to have spent $1 billion of the $1.75 billion it raised from investors, but the company's now aiming for profitability. I will be astonished if it pulls that off.