Today Sony hosted its annual Corporate Strategy Meeting, and CEO Kenishiro Yoshida and CFO Hiroki Totoki provided more details about the plans for the PlayStation business.
Yoshida-san started the presentation by mentioning that he believes that the gaming business, created together by Sony's Electronics and Music businesses, represents the greatest synergy that the company created in the 20th century. Speaking of synergies, perhaps unsurprisingly, we hear that the TV show dedicated to The Last of Us boosted sales of the game, as well as streaming of the song used in the show.
Following the example of Gran Turismo Sophy, Yoshida-san mentioned that AI is positioned as a technology that expands the creativity of creators, and Sony will continue to promote research and development alongside social implementation. Later in the presentation, he added that the focus is on creativity and Sony wants to be chosen by creators, so the vision for AI is as a powerful tool to be used by creators and that's the focus of the company's R&D.
We also get a reminder about Sony's expansion in India, with a mention of the recently announced India Hero Project that echoes the previously established China Hero Project that already produced several successful games. Yoshida-san later mentioned that there is a large opportunity for gaming and anime growth in India as it's a very young nation, demographically. Half of the population is under 30 years old.
Totoki-san talked about the growth strategy for the PlayStation business, mentioning that a central factor is increasing the number of active users and the driver of that increase is the expansion of PS5 in the market and the strengthening and expansion of the first-party game portfolio.
Totoki-san reiterated that Sony shipped 6.3 million PS5 units during the 4th quarter of the past fiscal year, and continues to manufacture more units at full capacity. Going forward, Sony intends to work with the publishing and development communities and PlayStation's own studios to expand the content pipeline and release increasingly innovative and compelling game experiences. That will result in growing the installed base and the number of active users.
To expand the first-party game portfolio, Sony will continue to take on board know-how from Bungie following the acquisition, enhancing the ability to release and operate live service games. On top of that, Sony also wants to increase the number of active users on PC on top of PS5.
Interestingly, Yoshida-san talked about the Super Mario Bros. Movie and Nintendo's IP.
"Recently, there is a cinema theater in Roppongi and I watched Super Mario, a wonderful IP entertainment content, I found. I played the Super Mario games 30 years ago, and it was so intense. A lovable IP can survive 30, 50, or even 100 years. That's something that we would like to make investment into for sustainable growth"
Lastly, Totoki-san mentioned that due to the advancements in cloud infrastructure and technology in the long term, at some point in time, it's possible that computing power will shift into the cloud. Sony has been offering this kind of service and it's continuing to prepare for the future. Generative AI is also something that Sony may have to focus on, but it's important to be close to creators and support them. Thinking carefully about how to use these technologies is one of the ways to avoid risks.
If you'd like to learn more about PlayStation's financial performance, you can check out the latest quarterly results via our dedicated article.