Sony's Game Division Losses Double Despite Increasing PS3 Sales

Sony Corp.'s Game division made up by subsidiary Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. revealed operating losses today for the second fiscal quarter of 96.7 billion yen ($841 million). The amount more than doubles last year's losses of 43.5 billion yen for the period of July through September.

Sony attributed the losses, as usual, to selling PlayStation 3 hardware for a loss. But software sales for both PlayStation 2 and PSP titles had decreased as well, with PS2 titles selling 9.2 million units less than last year's second quarter at 38.0 million, and PSP titles down 600,000 units to 12.6 million.

Although PS3 hardware sales can't be compared year-over-year, it nearly doubled its paltry first quarter sales, with Sony selling a relatively high 1.31 million units of the console due most likely to pricing rearrangements. Sony recently cut the price of the 80GB PS3 SKU worldwide and introduced a new 40GB baseline barebones model in all territories, so increased sales reflecting these changes should be posted in the current quarter.

Despite the Game division's grim outlook, Sony Corp. overall came away with a remarkable 73.7 billion yen ($641 million) profit for the quarter, a huge increase over last year's second quarter profits of 1.7 billion yen.