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•  The Wall Street Journal writes that "Google reported its first drop in advertising revenue since the beginning of the pandemic, as a slowdown in online marketing continues to weigh on the search giant’s business.

"Alphabet Inc., Google’s parent company, reported $59 billion in advertising revenue for the fourth quarter, a decrease of 3.6% from the same period in 2021. Those results marked the second time ad sales fell since Google became a publicly traded company in 2004.

"Google is attempting to weather one of the most challenging environments for its core advertising business in recent memory. While the company’s fortunes soared during an uptick in digital advertising in 2021, it has recently faced pressures from a worsening economy and new competitive forces in fields like artificial intelligence."

•  The Wall Street Journal reports that Apple "announced its first quarterly revenue decline in nearly four years as manufacturing disruptions in China curbed its ability to deliver premium iPhones.

"For the holiday quarter ending in December, Apple had revenue of $117.2 billion, down 5% from the same quarter a year ago, missing analyst estimates of $121.4 billion, according to FactSet. Net income was $30 billion, down 13% from a year ago, lower than analyst estimates of $31 billion.

"Apple Chief Executive Tim Cook said that in addition to manufacturing challenges, the economic climate also played a role in the company’s results.  'We estimated that we would have grown on the iPhone absent the supply constraints,' Mr. Cook said in an interview. 'The macroeconomic situation is more difficult to estimate, but it’s apparent from looking at the numbers that wind was in our face for the quarter.'

"For the important holiday quarter, the company struggled to keep up with demand for its latest premium iPhone 14 Pro models as China’s zero-Covid policies caused upheaval at a smartphone factory in Zhengzhou. In November, Apple issued a rare warning about disruptions to output of the iPhone 14 Pro.

"Apple has been able to get its supply chain back in order and increase its iPhone 14 production, and China has loosened its Covid-19 restrictions. Analysts now expect iPhone demand to be pushed to the current March quarter, but some have also expressed concern that Apple might face reduced demand for iPhones and other products."

•  Standard AI announced the signing of a definitive agreement "to acquire leading self-checkout solutions provider, Skip."  The deal, the company said, will allow Standard AI "to connect self-checkout with AI-powered autonomous checkout into one integrated experience," giving retailers "a self-checkout option with a clearly-defined path to an autonomous future."