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Sony's PlayStation business continues to decline

Sony's PlayStation business saw notable declines in the first quarter of the current fiscal year, contributing towards increased losses for the company as a whole.
Sony's PlayStation business saw notable declines in the first quarter of the current fiscal year, contributing towards increased losses for the company as a whole. The company noted that the current economic climate continued to prove difficult, with "the trend toward appreciation of the yen taking hold." As a result, Sony has downwardly revised its results for the full fiscal year, while also anticipating "a severe operating environment" for the second quarter. Sony's Game sector in particular was greatly affected, with lower recorded revenues and a swing to operating losses year-over-year. Sony has now lowered its PlayStation unit sales forecast for the 2012 fiscal year and, as a result, says that operating income for its Game division "is expected to be significantly below" its original estimate. For this quarter, the company grouped together its PlayStation hardware, rather than reporting units separately as per usual. Its PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 2 consoles combined sold 2.8 million units during the quarter, down compared to 3.2 million sold year-over-year. Its handheld consoles didn't fare much better -- the PS Vita and PSP combined sold 1.4 million units, down compared to 1.8 million sold in the same quarter last year. Software sales were also down across all hardware. Sony sold 20.1 million PS3 and PS2 games combined in the first quarter, down compared to 27.6 million year-over-year. The PS Vita and PSP combined sold 5.8 million software units, compared to 6.6 million year-over-year. Sony's struggles in the handheld space have forced the company to revise its initial forecast of 16 million system sales for PS Vita and PSP this fiscal year, cutting that number down by a quarter to 12 million. Notably, the company's Game division wasn't its biggest downfall. Its Mobile Products & Communications sector, which includes mobile phone and PC sales, saw notable operating losses of ¥28.1 billion ($358.6 million) compared to income of ¥1.6 billion ($20.4 million) year-over-year, mainly due to the impact of the Sony Mobile acquisition in February. For the quarter ended June, 2012, Sony's Game division saw revenues of ¥118.0 billion ($1.5 billion), down 14.5 percent compared to ¥137.9 billion ($1.8 billion) year-over-year, and operating losses of ¥3.5 billion ($44.7 million), compared to operating income on ¥4.1 billion ($52.3 million) in the same quarter year-over-year. Overall, the company recorded revenues of ¥1.52 trillion ($19.3 billion), up 1.4 percent compared to ¥1.49 trillion ($19.1 billion) year-over-year, and losses of ¥24.6 billion ($313.9 million) compared to losses of ¥15.5 billion ($197.8 million) year-over-year.

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