Sony is set to launch more than 10 live service games by 2026, the company announced during its latest earnings report on Wednesday. The company revealed that it sold 3.9 million PlayStation 5 units in the third quarter of 2021, bringing the total number of current-gen consoles sold by Sony up to 17.3 million, which is well ahead of Microsoft and its Xbox Series S/ X consoles. Sony says it expects to sell 19.3 million units in total by March 2022, down from its previous estimate of 20.2 million.
During the company’s earnings report for the previous financial quarter, Sony said that it aims to launch more than 10 live service games by the fiscal year ending March 31, 2026 through a close collaboration with the recently acquired Bungie and PlayStation Studios. Sony is yet to reveal any of the live service titles it is working on, but they are expected to compete with Epic Games’ Fortnite and Microsoft’s Minecraft and Sea of Thieves (Review). The company is looking to accelerate first party software revenue, after the acquisition of Bungie.
Sony expects user engagement to increase in the current quarter ending March 2022, thanks to major first party titles such as the critically acclaimed God of War for PC, and the upcoming release of titles like Horizon Forbidden West and Gran Turismo 7. Gameplay time in December 2021 was 20 percent lower year-on-year from December 2020, shortly after the PS5 was launched, according to the company.
The company revealed that while it has sold 17.3 million PS5 units so far — 3.9 million units in the last quarter — it has altered its estimate of 20.2 million total console sales by March 2022. Instead, Sony expects to sell a total of 19.3 million units — lower than the company’s PlayStation 4 sales in the same time frame, according to industry analyst Daniel Ahmad. This can be attributed to the global semiconductor and chip supply shortage. So far, Microsoft has reportedly sold 12 million units of its current-gen Xbox Series S/ X consoles, Ahmad recently revealed.