Microsoft’s revenue boosted by Xbox, cloud services

Microsoft on Thursday reported quarterly profits ahead of most expectations, as revenues got a boost from its Xbox consoles and Internet “cloud” services for enterprises.

Net profit in the quarter dipped to $4.5 billion from $5.2 billion in the same period a year ago, but topped most analyst forecasts.

Revenue rose above $23 billion, its best ever for the fiscal first quarter.

The better-than-expected resulted pushed shares of the US technology titan up more than three percent in after-market trades.

“We are innovating faster, engaging more deeply across the industry, and putting our customers at the center of everything we do, all of which positions Microsoft for future growth,” Microsoft chief executive Satya Nadella said in a release.

Microsoft said revenue hit a record high for its first fiscal quarter, aided by the popularity of its Xbox One video game consoles and Surface tablet computers along with businesses turning to software offered as services in the Internet “cloud.”

“Customers are embracing our latest technologies from Surface Pro 3 and Office 365 to Azure and SQL Server,” Microsoft chief operating officer Kevin Turner said.

Revenue in Microsoft’s Devices and Consumer unit grew 47 percent to $10.96 billion, with the company bringing in nearly a billion dollars from sales of its Surface Pro 3 tablet computer.

Xbox sales more than doubled to 2.4 million in the quarter, which saw the console release in 28 new markets.

Revenue was up 10 percent when it came to Commercial offerings, with cloud services Office 365, Azure, and Dynamics CRM growing 128 percent, according to Microsoft.

The results include the newly acquired handset division of Finland’s Nokia, whose Windows-based smartphones are struggling in a market dominated by Google Android devices and Apple’s iPhones.

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Microsoft’s revenue boosted by Xbox, cloud services