Maker Amazon's profit more than doubles in three months

The two companies over the next few months planning to launch an official YouTube app on Amazon Fire TV devices and Fire TV Edition smart TVs, as well as the Prime Video app for streaming to Chromecast and Chromecast built-in devices.

The company hopes that cutting delivery times in half will make its $119-a-year Prime membership more worthwhile, since every other online store offers free deliveries in two days.

This new challenge will likely cause both retailers to consider leaning into their stores more, perhaps by increasing the degree that they are used as hubs for same-day delivery, or by finding new ways to lure customers through their doors. The stock has gained 27 percent this year. Much of that profit comes from the Amazon Web Services division, which leads in the growing market for selling computing power and data storage.

What Amazon Prime gets you - shipping-wise.

Analyst consensus estimates were for revenue of $59.65 billion and EPS of $4.72. It was the company's slowest revenue growth in some four years.

While AWS growth slightly slowed to 42 percent on $7.7 billion in sales in Q1, the expansion in the operating margin is the "a result of a lot of the good work on infrastructure and efficiencies", Olsavsky said.

The company's loyal customer base has drawn merchants to sell and increasingly advertise through its site in exchange for fees. Even so, analysts said they were hopeful that the advertising business - the third-largest in the country, behind Google and Facebook - would continue to benefit Amazon.

The company is delving into even less familiar terrain, too.

Growth in those segments means more predictable revenue, a contrast to Amazon's retail business. Shipping costs, meanwhile, rose 21 per cent during the first quarter to US$7.32b.

At the recent 2019 first-quarter earnings call, Amazon announced it is looking to make one-day shipments the default for Prime subscribers. Hiring would also pick up from the 12 percent increase Amazon posted in the past 12 months, according to Olsavsky. The company, which had been spending heavily in a bid to grab market share in India's emerging online retail sector, was dealt a setback by regulations that limit the ability of foreign marketplace operators to take stakes in local merchants or ink exclusive deals with local sellers.


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