The gaming industry continues to experience a decline in hardware sales this past quarter with Sony just reporting a dip in sales for the game division during the second quarter ending September 30th. However, there is one bright spot for the PlayStation division as the company managed to sell more home consoles than both the Xbox 360 and Wii combined.
Sony reported a bump in revenue of 2 percent continuing its growth seen last quarter, but still posted a net loss of $198 million. The company did manage to shrink its loss of $350 million during the same quarter last year. The good news for Sony is that the company as a whole actually posted an operating profit of $388 million before taxes which is a significant improvement over the $20 million loss same time last year.
On the gaming side of things, the PlayStation division reported a drop in sales by 15.8 percent year over year rounding revenue out to $1.85 billion. The gaming division did post a small operating profit of $29 million, a decline from last year but an improvement from the $45 million loss seen last quarter.
Software grew on both the home console and handheld fronts as the company shifted 41.4 million PS3/PS2 game up from 40.2 million. On the handheld side, software sales grew from 8.2 to 8.7 million units.
On the hardware front, Sony sold 3.5 million PS3 and PS2 units from July to September, compared to 4.9 million from last year. Handhelds took a slight dive from 1.7 million to 1.6 million PSP and PS Vita sales. Unfortunately Sony started this practice of lumping home consoles (PS3, PS2) and handhelds (PSP, PS Vita) together so its difficult to ascertain how many PS Vitas were sold.
The company did lower its forecast for the PS Vita for the second time this year to 10 million, after lowering it from 16 million earlier this year. While still slightly in the red still, CEO Kazuo Hirai's plan that he set in motion last year to bring the company back to profitability seems to be working as evident by the reduction in loss each quarter.
Sony is currently structured to operate for success like its still the `90s. Hirai seems to have a solid plan and gets it that the company needs to be structured to be agile, lean and efficient to be competitive in today's market. I think The Verge summed things up nicely when it said:
All in all, it was a rough quarter for Japan's biggest electronics maker. But from what we've seen, Hirai has a clear plan of action - get out of unprofitable businesses and focus on Sony's opportunities for growth - and it's paying off. If he can turn the company around from a catastrophic 2011 and in a single year put it back in the black despite the stubbornly strong yen, Sony's future could be very bright indeed.
Hardware Sales Comparison
Globally the PlayStation brand is doing well sales wise as it managed to comfortably outsell both of its competitors - Microsoft and Nintendo. Microsoft's quarterly report for the same time period (July to September) reveals that the company faced a 24 percent drop in revenue with hardware sales for the Xbox 360 dropping to 1.7 million units.
Compiled via NeoGAF:
Nintendo in its quarterly report for the same time period (July to September) reveals that the company is down 62 percent year over year, and only managed to sell 600k Wii units. This brings the total Xbox 360 and Wii sales to 2.3 million units, below Sony's home console sales total of 3.5 million units for the PS3 and PS2.
While Sony did not provide individual sales figures for the PS3, its not difficult to get an idea of what that would be based on PS2's sales trend. Sony sold 1.2 million PS2s last year during the same quarter, and with overall hardware sales down one could estimate approximately 1 million PS2s at the most with approximately 2.5 million PS3s sold.
Year to date analysis done by Nintendo shows the 3DS smashing all systems sales wise, with the PS3 outselling all other home consoles.