Poor Vita Performance Expected To Continue
Sony's PlayStation-specific FY2013 financial report is fairly unsurprising, in that the malaise surrounding the end of this console generation has lead to a major slump in sales. Still, the Yen's fluctuating value has contributed to the corporation's first annual profit in five years, and Sony predicts a major sales upturn in the next financial year. I wonder why?
It certainly won't be thanks to the Vita, which is predicted to bring home even less bacon.
First up: the big picture. Sony's March 2012-March 2013 report shows sales decreased by 12.2% across the board, compared to the previous year, resulting in a unit sales total of £4.6 billion. Operating income slumped by £180m all-told. This decrease has naturally been laid at the feet of "softening demand" for the PS3 at the end of the console generation, as well as the PS Vita profoundly under-performing.
Yes, the Vita remains a bugbear for Sony, having attracted an annual total of 7 million sales worldwide... including PSP figures (the older device was still very popular in Japan but is nearing the end of its life cycle now). Sony predict that only 5 million handhelds will be sold over the next financial year, suggesting that their pricey handheld still isn't drawing the crowds. When compared to 18 million 3DS sales (not including DS sales) over the same period, it's clear that consumers still look to Nintendo's experience in the portable market and stronger game lineup.
Despite the doom and gloom, Sony benefited from the Yen depreciating in value (resulting in Japanese-manufactured products becoming much more competitive among other benefits), allowing the corporation to post their first annual profit for half a decade. Looking forward, they expect PlayStation sales to "increase significantly" thanks to some sort of newfangled console thingy, though operating income is predicted to level out due to manufacturing, R&D and marketing costs.
The report is available online - right here - if you fancy having a look yourself. You'll want to skip to page 3 for the PlayStation-related section.