PlayStation has “best ever year”, ships 7.8 million PS5s so far

Thomas Harrison-Lord
PlayStation has “best ever year”, ships 7.8 million PS5s so far

Despite the ongoing Coivd-19 pandemic playing havoc with chip supplies, and the overwhelmingly high demand making stock shortages a real problem, Sony has sold 7.8 million PS5 up until the end of March 2021, outpacing the PS4 within the same launch window.

In terms of Sony’s figures, we’re dealing with the financial year, not the calendar year. For FY2020, its gaming and network services division (PlayStation, to you and me) brought in a 34 per cent year-on-year increase in sales to top out at a new all-time record, with a nine per cent increase projected for FY2021.

While its profits also increased, the latest earnings report notes an negative impact “resulting from strategic price points for PS5 hardware that were set lower than the manufacturing costs.” That keen PS5 pricing is a loss-leader to help kick-start the new generation.

Sony also sold over one million PS4s in the last quarter, January to March 2021, bringing it up to 115.9 million sales in total. With many racing games still releasing on the console, there’s still life in the seven-year-old dog yet. Meanwhile, PlayStation Plus subscribers grew by 14.7 per cent when compared to this time last year.

When it comes to the new machinery, the next-gen upgraded versions of Ride 4, WRC 9 and MotoGP 21, in particular, are significant steps forward over their last-gen console stablemates. The rapid loading times, 4K visuals and buttery-smooth frame rates enhance the experience, and the DualSense haptic feedback in these games is also put to good use.

With a native PS5 upgrade of Wreckfest coming to PS5 on 1st June and F1 2021 confirmed for a PS5 and Xbox Series release in July, there’s a surprising number of great racing games that take advantage of the new power and controller either already on the market or coming very soon. Plus, playing something like Assetto Corsa Competizione via backwards compatibility sees a noticeable upgrade.

While we are all waiting for the next-gen ‘killer-app’ for racing game fans – most notably the new Need for Speed and Gran Turismo games being pushed in 2022 – there is plenty to enjoy on your new machinery, including Xbox Series owners too. That is, should you be lucky enough to get hold of one…

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