Sony released its financial results for the second quarter of the 2022 fiscal year (Q2 FY2022). In the three months ending on September 30, 2022, it saw a new sales milestone for the PlayStation 5. However, Sony financials also revealed a decline in its gaming-derived profit of nearly 49%, despite growth in overall revenue. Similarly, while revenue from the PS Plus subscription service grew, the service’s membership population dropped by nearly 2 million subscribers.
According to its Q2 FY2022 financials, Sony has sold over 25 million PS5s as of the beginning of October. During the quarter it sold over 3.3 million PS5 units globally, almost exactly the same number it sold during the same quarter last year. Revenue from those sales, however, was up by nearly 12% to 727 billion yen (about $4.93 billion USD), partially due to a price hike enacted in some regions. Profit from its gaming division, however, was down by nearly 49%, thanks to rising costs. Major contributors to those costs include the $3.6 billion USD acquisition of Destiny 2 developer Bungie, as well as rising development costs. For the overall Sony Group, however, profit was up about 8%. Stronger performance in music, imaging (for camera sensors, etc.), and other parts of the company offset the declines in games.
PS Plus subscriptions over the quarter dropped to 45.4 million, down from 47.3 million in the previous quarter. This is the third quarter in a row that PS Plus subscriptions have declined. The PSN’s monthly active user counts (i.e. the estimated total number of unique accounts that played a game or used services on PSN in the last month of the quarter) were also down to 102 million, the lowest number since 2020. In an earnings call Sony Chief Financial Officer Hiroki Totoki attributed the declines to lower-than-expected sales of third-party titles, as well as more people “going outside” thanks to changes in the pandemic situation. He anticipated a recovery in subscriber numbers over the next quarter, thanks to the impact of major releases like God of War Ragnarok and Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2.
Sony financials for the quarter also revealed that digital purchases now account for more than 63% of game sales. The company aims to ship 23 million PS5s within the next fiscal year beginning in April 2023. By comparison, the previous financial year saw Sony ship only 11.5 million PS5 units, down from the initial target of 14.8 million. At the time Sony attributed the missed targets to parts shortages and supply chain issues.