Sony now no longer loses money on each PlayStation 3 console sold. Quite the achievement for a piece of hardware that originally cost the company in the region of $800 USD to produce, if not more.
No-one expected Sony to cut the price of the PS3 in 2009 when it was still a loss making proposition, but with the release of the improved PS3 Slim, the company gained some breathing space. However, with a new price point of $299, not even the Slim could turn a profit, losing approximately $18 per console as recently as this year. That is until we brought you the console’s latest revision.
Incorporating a 40nm RSX GPU, the CECH-2100A model included a number of revisions to its board and fan system, resulting in a 200g lighter system that pulled 15 per cent less power. Clearly, these numerous changes resulted in significant cost reductions, which Sony confirmed in its latest financial results:
“The company stopped losing money from PS3 consoles in March and will likely post an annual profit of at least 1 billion yen this year from PS3,” Nobuyuki Oneda, chief financial officer of Sony, revealed at a Tokyo news conference.
The cost of Blu-ray diodes have also dropped this year, with the console’s Blu-ray drive likely to have dropped to just $50 compared to its lofty 2009 $100 price.
Now that the PS3 hardware is finally bringing in a profit Sony needn’t rely on just software sales to prop up its games business. This is a games business that has been losing money since the release of the PS3 in 2006. Thankfully, although the division lost money for the full year, the last sixth months resulted in two straight quarters of profit, as confirmed by Oneda:
“The game business achieved a profit in the fourth quarter due to strong sales of first-party software and the elimination of negative margins on the PS3.” Oneda adds in reference to the games business: “For this year we expect to be able to generate at least double-digit profits.”
We expect that Sony has been able to cut in the region of $75, if the Blu-ray player costs are to be believed, which is quite the achievement. It may even leave room for a slight price cut before the year is out.