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article imageSony profit boosted by PlayStation 4, sales may be double Xbox's

By James Walker     Jan 30, 2016 in Technology
Sony Corp. posted a 33.5 percent jump in profit over the last quarter this week despite struggling to succeed in its smartphone and consumer electronics businesses. The PlayStation 4 led the sales as the console continues to prove popular.
The company observed a "significant increase" in the demand for PlayStation 4 consoles over the holiday period. Total sales were up 10.5 percent year-over-year to $4.89 billion, giving the company $1 billion in profit for the three months from October to December.
Sony's outlook has remained unchanged at $1.2 billion profit for the entire fiscal year. The numbers suggest the turnaround strategy is working as last year it was making losses as demand for products made by its core industries declined.
Sony is still struggling to find a foothold in the smartphone market. Its Xperia mobile phones have failed to become popular or widespread as the company has adopted an iterative stance and made only minor changes each year. It has also suffered increased competition in its television, entertainment and image sensor divisions.
Throughout the restructuring, the PlayStation arm of the company has remained strong. 8.4 million consoles were sold in the last quarter, up from 6.4 million in the same period a year ago. Over 37.7 million PlayStation 4s have now been shipped worldwide, according to statistics posted by the company in this week's report.
Key rival Microsoft does not post exact sales figures for the Xbox One, leaving the industry in the dark as to exactly how many consoles it has sold. As Eurogamer reports, EA's financial executive Blake Jorgensen indirectly revealed the number this week though, saying the games giant estimates 55 million current-generation consoles have been sold in total.
Deducting the known number of PS4s from that combined figure, it looks as though there are 19 million Xbox Ones in use by gamers. The figure is just over half that of the PlayStation 4, highlighting just how great a lead Sony has acquired.
EA notes the market in general is still growing though, and overall sales are up 50 percent higher over last-generation consoles the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. Recently, Microsoft claimed it has 48 million active users on its Xbox Live online gaming platform but that takes into account people playing on Xbox 360, Xbox One and Windows 10.
This week, Sony announced the next stage of its corporate restructuring, this time focused around PlayStation. The PlayStation business will be turned into an entirely new company, Sony Interactive Entertainment, to begin operating on April 1, 2016. The company's second division will be known as Sony Computer Entertainment.
More about Playstation, Ps4, Playstation 4, Sony, Profit
 
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