Sony recently published its latest earnings report and it contained an interesting detail about the elusive PlayStation 5 console. According to the report, the company sold a total of 4.5 million PlayStation 5 consoles in 2020. This is an indication that the company has been able to mass-produce the console which has been extremely difficult to buy since its launch in November. However, we believe the figure would have be way higher if there was availability of the console. The report also shows that the demand for the PlayStation 4 witnessed a sharp drop year-on-year, with 1.4 million units shipped in the October-December quarter. This represents a 77 percent decrease from the previous year. Sony actually managed to sell fewer PS4s in the holiday quarter than it did from July to September.
Overall, Sony’s gaming business witnessed a much improved performed which surpassed the brand’s result a year ago. Analyst Daniel Ahmad noted that the fourth quarter of 2020 was in fact, the best quarter in PlayStation history. Sony gaming division raked in an increased revenue of 40 percent, to peak at 883.2 billion yen ($8.4 billion). The revenue is partly driven by sales of the new PlayStation 5. The division also recorded a surge in operating profit by 50 percent, reaching 80.2 billion yen ($763.3 million). This is as a result of higher game sales, PlayStation Plus subscriptions, and better margins on PS4 hardware.
Sony does note, however, that expenses related to the PS5 launch offset some of its profit gains, and also confirms that the PS5 hardware itself is being sold for less than what it costs to make. A loss was incurred due to “strategic price points for PS5 hardware that were set lower than the manufacturing costs,” the company disclosed.
Microsoft didn’t release specific sales figures for the Xbox Series X or Series S with its earnings report last week, but the company did say that Xbox hardware revenue was up 86 percent year-on-year.
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