Google. Image Credit: AFP

San Francisco: Google’s parent company Alphabet on Tuesday beat quarterly earnings expectations, raking in $18.9 billion (Dh69.4 billion) in profit as its online ad engine and cloud services thrived.

Google remains a centrepiece of online activity, with offerings such as its search engine, ad marketplace, and YouTube video platform that give it extensive global influence.

Alphabet revenue of $65.1 billion in the recently-ended quarter eclipsed the same period last year by some 41 per cent, according to the tech titan.

“This quarter’s results show how our (artificial intelligence) investments are enabling us to build more helpful products for people and our partners,” said Sundar Pichai, CEO of Alphabet and Google.

“As the digital transformation and shift to hybrid work continue, our Cloud services are helping organizations collaborate,” he added.

The surge in Alphabet’s earnings comes as the tech giant faces increased scrutiny from regulators regarding its power.

Google is among internet giants in the crosshairs of regulators and critics concerned about whether they unfairly dominate markets and fend off competition.

South Korea’s antitrust watchdog fined Google nearly $180 million in September for abusing its dominance in the mobile operating systems and app markets, it said, the latest in a series of regulatory moves against tech giants around the world.

Google also reportedly faces the threat of a new antitrust lawsuit from US officials over the Silicon Valley giant’s power in the online advertising market.

The latest figures build on the pandemic trend that has seen an acceleration in people using the internet for shopping, work, learning and entertainment.

Alphabet reported quarterly profit in July that had nearly tripled, as money poured in from ads on its search engine and YouTube video platform.

One area the giant has struggled is the smartphone handset market, and in October Google launched new Pixel 6 smartphones, its latest attempt to field a champion.

Smartphone sales are dominated by Apple and South Korean electronics colossus Samsung, but Google is aiming to expand its single-digit market share with the newest Android-powered Pixel line.

Google touted the phones as completely “reimagined” during a presentation in which it pointed to security, speed, style and sophisticated software capabilities.

Samsung was the top smartphone vendor with 23 per cent of the market, while Apple was second with 15 per cent and Chinese firm Xiaomi on its heels with 14 per cent, Canalys reported.