Sony Says The PS5 Is Halfway Into Its Life Cycle With Over 54 Million Sold

Four more years! Four more years!

Sony’s latest financial update, which focuses on its Q3 FY 2023 (October to December 2023) has come with new looks at how the PlayStation business is performing, including of course the PS5 hardware.

The company has recorded a massive 54.7 million PS5 consoles sold since launch in November 2020, which is (as far as we can tell) an enormous slice of the current-generation pie, but also expects the momentum of the first few years to slow down. In fact, 

One comment that’s been widely circulated (and unfortunately misquoted) is that the PS5 console is now considered by Sony to be in the “latter half of its life cycle,” with senior VP of Sony Financial Group Naomi Matsuoka saying:

“Regarding the PS5 hardware, which will enter its fifth year since launch, partially due to its entering the latter half of the console cycle, we aim to optimise sales with a greater emphasis on the balance with profits, so we anticipate a gradual decline in unit sales from next fiscal year onwards.”

Early reports indicated that the statement suggested the console was in the latter “stages” of life, sparking discussion that a new generation might be closer than we think, but taking the actual quote at face value it seems like Sony accepts we’ve at least hit the halfway point in the current generation. That may indicate we won’t see something akin to a PS6 until at least 2028, or it could mean very little. 

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Mastusoka’s comments suggest that while hardware adoption will slow down and there will be no major first-party releases before March 2025, the large PS5 install base will see an increase in third-party support and revenue from subscriptions, which it will likely use to balance profitability on declining hardware.

Certainly, all eyes are on Xbox with a much-anticipated business update going out to the world tomorrow in the form of a podcast with Xbox executives Phil Spencer, Sarah Bond and Matt Booty. Expectation among fans and big chunks of the media is that this will give is the first insight into a new “multiplatform” strategy, which may see Xbox first-party titles appear on PS5 to take full advantage of that 54+ million strong user base.