This article is part of the On Tech newsletter. Here is a collection of past columns.
I keep writing about the bonkers dollars that Big Tech companies are generating in revenue and profits. But what may be even more astounding is what the technology giants are spending to keep their businesses humming and growing long into the future.
I have watched, mouth agape, as America’s five biggest tech superstars — Apple, Microsoft, Google, Amazon and Facebook — have splurged on big-ticket investments in their businesses. That includes specialized equipment to assemble iPhones, hulking computer hubs and undersea internet cables that zip YouTube videos to your phone, and the warehouses for Amazon workers to assemble and ship orders.
What the companies spend on physical assets that last for years — capital expenditures, for you wonks — is one of the best glimpses at how Big Tech leverages success into even more success.