What to Expect From Google Today

Most eyes will be on Google (NAS: GOOG) when the search king reports fourth-quarter earnings after the bell today. Here's a closer look at what analysts expect:


Q4 2011 (est.)

Q4 2010

Estimated Growth


$8.41 billion

$6.37 billion


Earning Per Share




Source: Yahoo! Finance.

There are two things of note in these estimates. First, Wall Street is calling for accelerating revenue growth after factoring in traffic acquisition costs. Second, earnings growth is expected to decline from 28.8%. That's roughly consistent with what we've seen in recent quarters, but the delta nevertheless bears watching since it could indicate lower margins.

Three more things to watch
As business-focused investors, there are several Google initiatives we're interested in. Here are three things I'm particularly hoping to hear more about:

  • Android development. Strong reports from its iPhone suppliers suggest Apple (NAS: AAPL) is on the verge of another blowout quarter. Partly that's because of apps -- the Mac maker has been doing a better job of getting code to iOS first. Are there any signs of that changing? What do we know about how developers are taking to the Ice Cream Sandwich version of Google's free mobile operating system?

  • Google Apps. Office may still rule the world of productivity apps, but the past year has seen rising interest in cloud computing alternatives for most business services. Is Google capitalizing? At the Dreamforce conference in September, former CEO Eric Schmidt said the company had 40 million users of Google Apps and was adding 5,000 new companies per day. If true, we'll see the effect of those gains when Microsoft (NAS: MSFT) reports earnings after the bell today.

  • Tablets. Will we ever get an answer as to whether Google is making its own tablet? The latest reports say the search king wants to come out with an equally low-cost alternative to Amazon.com's Kindle Fire.

What do you expect to see from Google? Let us know by leaving a comment below.

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At the time thisarticle was published Fool contributorTim Beyersis a member of theMotley Fool Rule Breakersstock-picking team. He owned shares of Apple and Google at the time of publication. Check out Tim'sweb home,portfolio holdingsandFoolish writings, or connect with him onGoogle+or Twitter, where he goes by@milehighfool. You can also get his insightsdelivered directly to your RSS reader.Motley Fool newsletter serviceshave recommended buying shares of Microsoft, Google, Amazon.com, and Apple.Motley Fool newsletter serviceshave recommended creating a bull spread position in Apple.Motley Fool newsletter serviceshave recommended creating a bull spread position in Microsoft. Try any of our Foolish newsletter servicesfree for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe thatconsidering a diverse range of insightsmakes us better investors. The Motley Fool has adisclosure policy.

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