PlayStation Rules Sony’s Earnings Report – With a Huge PS5 Forecast

Despite the logistical and distribution woes thrown up by the pandemic, the PlayStation brand has recorded one of its best quarters on record.
PlayStation, PS4
The PlayStation 4 has been a resounding success with gaming now firmly Sony's most-profitable department. | Source: Shutterstock.com
  • Sony has released its financial earning report for Q1 2020.
  • PlayStation and the Game and Network Services segment dominated the report.
  • While hardware sales have declined, game sales have surged with 91 million sold in the three months to June 30, 2020.

Today, Sony released its Q1 2020 financial results for the three months ending on June 30, 2020. Despite the logistical and distribution woes thrown up by the pandemic, the PlayStation brand has recorded one of its best quarters on record, thanks in part to record game sales.

Hardware sales have declined in line with the normal end of generation estimates, totaling 1.9 million units in Q1 2020, compared to 3.2 million for the same period last year.

The figure brings the cumulative sell-through of PS4 units to a lifetime total of 112.3 million, trumping even the PS2, which sold 106.02 million units by this period in its life-cycle.

PlayStation
Sony has sold a cumulative 112.3 million PS4 units since launch. | Source: Sony

The shift towards digital software continued with a physical/digital sales split of 23.7 million and 67.3 million compared to 20.2 million and 22.7 million in Q1 2019.

PlayStation
A stellar quarter for PlayStation. | Source: Sony

Q1 2020 recorded the highest proportion of digital software sales on record – a 74% digital download ratio. Of the 91 million games sold last quarter, 18.5 million were first-party Sony titles spearheaded by The Last of Us Part II (4.0 million copies in the first three days).

PlayStation
Hardware sales decline, but game sales surge. | Source: Sony

PlayStation Plus subscriptions reached a record of just shy of 45 million, and active PlayStation Network users hit 113 million.

PlayStation
Subscription services are on the up. | Source: Sony

While hardware revenue dropped to $524 million, game software sales surged to $4.07 billion – PlayStation’s best Q1 performance ever.

Watch: How Sony Won this Console Generation with the PS4

The Game and Network Services Segment, which comprises PlayStation, drew in $5.63 billion, the best segment within the company.

PlayStation
PlayStation remains a cash cow for Sony. | Source: Sony

PlayStation Future Forecast

Looking to the future, Sony forecasts that the launch of the PS5 later this year will up Game and Network Services sales to $23.36 billion while operating income will reach $2.24 billion, notably due to costs involved in launch a new console.

Sony noted:

Sales are expected to increase significantly year-on-year mainly due to an expected significant increase in sales of game software and hardware as a result of the launch of PS5. Operating income is expected to be essentially flat year-on-year primarily due to the above-mentioned expected significant increase in game software sales and PS Plus sales, substantially offset by an expected increase in selling, general and administrative expenses related to the introduction of PS5 and an expected increase in the cost of sales ratio for hardware.’

PlayStation
Sony forecasts a significant increase in hardware sales thanks to the PS5. | Source: Sony

Sony forecasts a significant increase in hardware sales due to the PS5 launch in line with reports that it has doubled its initial 2020 production order from 5-6 million to 10 million units.

Samburaj Das edited this article for CCN.com. If you see a breach of our Code of Ethics or find a factual, spelling, or grammar error, please contact us.

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