Global semiconductor shortage threatens to cut PlayStation 5 supply for the rest of this year, even as Sony’s game leader has called for the company to be able to produce “reasonable numbers” of their new console in the second half of 2021.
The PS5 is one of the most popular tech products in recent months, with shipments sold as soon as they reached stores when the console was launched in November last year.
Coronavirus locks only added to gamers ’demand for the latest consoles and software, fueling what is expected to be the highest profits for Sony’s game segment in the financial year to March. Sony improved its game unit’s annual revenue forecasts earlier this month primarily by improving sales of games software, services and decorations.
But the broader rise in demand for electronic components, from the car industry to smartphones, over the past year has been plagued by a pandemic-related outbreak of semifinals manufacturing. Analysts expect the chip industry to take many more months to recover.
Jim Ryan, president and chief executive of Sony Interactive Entertainment, said he expected PS5 supply limits to shrink “gradually through 2021” but declined to promise there would be enough to meet demand before the next sales season. holidays.
“It will get better every month throughout 2021,” he said. “The speed of the supply chain accumulates all year round, so before we reach the second half , you’re going to see really good numbers indeed. ”
But he said: “Few magicians can awaken magic.”
Ryan reaffirmed Sony’s “desire” to sell more PS5 consoles in 2021 than its previous 14.9m unit, the PlayStation 4, in its first 12 months. Earlier this month, Sony said it had sold 4.5m PS5 in November and December.
That compares with Nintendo Switch 26m consoles sold in 2020, according to Ampere Analysis, which also estimates that Microsoft has sold about 2.8m of their latest Xbox Series X / S in the last two months of last year.
“While they are far from weak, both Sony and Microsoft are reducing the inability to make more consoles to meet strong demand,” said Piers Harding-Rolls, an analyst at Ampere.
Ben Bajarin, an analyst at Creative Strategies, predicts that the slowdown of the semiconductor will go down to 2022. “For them to catch up, demand needs to slow down,” he said. “I don’t see any end in sight. ”
Ryan’s comments came when Sony unveiled plans to launch a new virtual reality headset to connect to the PS5, after the previous PlayStation VR sold more than 5m units.
While Sony maintains that PSVR sales exceeded expectations, real-time sales have been selling poorly, especially compared to the high expectations that followed a $ build. Facebook’s 2bn Oculus VR in 2014.
Lately, there seems to be a resurgence of growth. Facebook announced a “strong” sale of its latest headset, Oculus Quest 2, over the Christmas holidays. Apple is reportedly preparing a “mixed reality” device for a launch that could arrive as early as next year.
Ryan gave very little details about the specifications or the launch date of the new PlayStation headset, except to say that it would be connected with a single cable into the PS5 console.
“To truly provide a VR experience that PS5 owners will be happy with, that needs to be connected to the system,” he said, advertising at a “high-end” system with rich graphics.
That approach is different with Oculus, which now focuses on self-contained headphones, even though that means impacting graphic fidelity. Oculus completed the development of its PC-connected Rift product line last year.
“Technology has definitely moved on from the first PlayStation VR headset, and we’ll capture that,” Ryan said.