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Google Cuts 12,000 Jobs, After Facebook, Twitter, and Other Tech Giants.

Google is laying off about 12,000 people, making it the latest tech company to cut a lot of jobs as inflation rises and global markets get ready for a downturn.

Google SEO Sundar Pichai told staff about the cuts in an email and a blog post on Friday. Comparatively, recent layoffs at Microsoft (10,000 jobs, or 5 percent of the workforce), Amazon (18,000 jobs, or 6 percent), and Meta (11,000 jobs, or 13 percent) affected 5 percent, 6 percent, and 13 percent of the workforce, respectively. Alphabet, which owns Google, told Verily, its health-focused subsidiary, and Intrinsic, which makes software for industrial robots, that they would have to lay off fewer people.

In a blog post, Pichai said that the company needed to “sharpen our focus, reengineer our cost base, and direct our talent and capital to our highest priorities” because of the layoffs. The CEO said that artificial intelligence (AI) would be important in the future.

Pichai said, “I am confident about the huge opportunity in front of us because of how strong our mission is, how valuable our products and services are, and how early we have invested in AI.” “We’ll have to make hard choices if we want to get it all.”

Google took an early lead in AI with investments like its 2014 purchase of the research-focused AI lab DeepMind. However, more daring competitors like OpenAI, which launched its popular AI chatbot ChatGPT on the web last year, have caught Google off guard in recent months. Microsoft, which competes with Google, has made a deep partnership with OpenAI. Microsoft has promised to use OpenAI’s AI tech in products like its search engine and office software.

In its earnings report from last October, Google said it made $69 billion in revenue and $13.9 billion in profit. This was an increase in revenue (from $65.1 billion the year before) but a decrease in profit (from $18.9 billion the same quarter the year before). Pichai hinted last year that the company would slow down on hiring by saying that Googlers would have to work with “greater urgency, sharper focus, and more hunger than we’ve shown on sunnier days.”

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