If you ever needed a clearer indication that microtransactions and DLC are big business, one need look no further than PlayStation‘s latest revenue figures.
Niko Partners analyst Daniel Ahmad recently shared a breakdown of Sony’s Game & Network net sales between April and June of this year and, needless to say, the results are staggering. Throughout the period, Add-on content – which accounts for any additional item purchased for a game outside of the initial retail price – was responsible for 24% of total revenue, raking in an eye-watering $2.29 billion. To put that figure into perspective, packaged software (i.e. games) accounted for just 6% of the overall total and $0.35 billion.
Check out the graph below for a full breakdown of PlayStation’s FY20 Q1 performance:
According to Ahmad, the results represent the best quarter ever for Sony as far as network sales are concerned, with one particularly interesting statistic revealing that 74% of all game sales within the last three months were digital, singlehandedly explaining the company’s decision to offer a digital-only version of the upcoming PlayStation 5. It’s worth noting, of course, that store closures and strict social distancing measures enforced as a result of COVID-19 will have undoubtedly had an impact on that final tally.
As for other big money makers, more than 3 million PS4 consoles were shipped in the first half of 2020, which is certainly nothing to scoff at, considering the hardware’s age and impending retirement. Finally, the addition of 6.1 million PlayStation Plus members means a total of around 44.9 million are now subscribed to the premium service, which allows for the use of online multiplayer facilities.
That being the case, then, we can’t imagine Sony will have any intention of removing PS Plus for the foreseeable future, which is more than can be said for Microsoft. If latest developments are any indication, the software giant has plans to remove the Xbox Live paywall altogether, making multiplayer free for everyone without limit. See here for all the details.