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Tech Stock News: Alphabet Ramps Up Nest, Roku Impresses, and More

By Daniel Sparks – May 11, 2019 at 4:12PM

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Two earnings report and one new tech gadget.

It was a volatile week in the stock market, as trade tensions between the U.S. and China spooked some investors. The S&P 500 fell more than 2% during the week.

Looking beyond the week's broader-market headline, earnings season continued, as a range of notable companies in tech reported. Here's a look at two of those companies' latest quarterly results, as well as a review of Alphabet's (GOOG -0.19%) (GOOGL -0.21%) plan to double down on its Nest brand.

Alphabet's new Nest Hub Max

Alphabet's new Nest Hub Max. Image source: Alphabet.

Home and Nest become Google Nest

Just over a year ago, Alphabet announced that it would bring its smart-home product company, Nest, under its Google segment. The business was previously operating as part of Alphabet's "other bets" segment, indicating that it wasn't a core project for the company. Bringing the business into its "Google other revenues," alongside major initiatives like cloud, hardware, and the app store, signaled Alphabet's decision to invest more into the business.

Now Alphabet is taking another step in improving its Nest products. It's combining its Nest and Google Home brands, calling the brand Google Nest. And this isn't just a name change. It's part of an effort to create a more seamless and useful experience. This makes sense, given the increasing overlap between smart speakers, voice assistants, and smart-home devices.

Along with this change, Alphabet launched its first product under the new team: Nest Hub Max. The device has a 10-inch HD screen with a smart camera, premium sound, and (of course) Google Assistant.

Roku is firing on all cylinders

Shares of streaming-TV platform company Roku (ROKU -4.33%) skyrocketed this week. The stock increased more than 27% during the week, thanks to the company's better-than-expected first-quarter results.

Roku's revenue surged 51% year over year to $206.7 million. This performance consisted of $134.2 million in platform revenue, up 79% year over year, and $72.5 million in player revenue, up 18% year over year. Supporting its strong growth was a 40% increase in streaming hours, a 74% jump in streaming hours, and a 27% boost in average revenue per user.

"The shift to streaming and away from linear TV and legacy distribution platforms has enormous momentum," said Roku management in the company's first-quarter earnings release.

Etsy's profits soar

Slightly lower-than-expected revenue for Etsy's (ETSY 1.93%) first quarter may have disappointed some investors and sent shares lower this week. But the numbers from the quarterly report still tell an upbeat story.

Etsy's first-quarter revenue increased 40.1% year over year over year, helped by a 43.4% increase in marketplace revenue and a 29.3% increase in services revenue. Net income soared 143.5% year over year, and adjusted EBITDA jumped 88.7%.

Highlighting the strength of Etsy's online marketplace for unique and hand-crafted goods, active sellers and buyers on the platform increased 13,0% and 18.3% year over year, respectively, during the quarter.

Suzanne Frey, an executive at Alphabet, is a member of The Motley Fool's board of directors. Daniel Sparks has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Alphabet (A shares), Alphabet (C shares), and Etsy. The Motley Fool recommends Roku. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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Stocks Mentioned

Alphabet (A shares) Stock Quote
Alphabet (A shares)
GOOGL
$101.43 (-0.21%) $0.21
Alphabet (C shares) Stock Quote
Alphabet (C shares)
GOOG
$102.22 (-0.19%) $0.19
Etsy Stock Quote
Etsy
ETSY
$112.33 (1.93%) $2.13
Roku Stock Quote
Roku
ROKU
$59.70 (-4.33%) $-2.70

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