Smartphone sales slump can’t stop Sony from crushing company profit records
Much like LG, Sony keeps bleeding money in the mobile tech segment while earning in many other departments more than enough to survive. Of course, LG washing machines and TVs have nothing on PlayStation hardware and software, though at the same time, there’s no Xperia on the horizon capable of the shipment numbers predicted for the modular G5 this year.
All comparisons with rival companies aside, you have to applaud Sony for managing to triple (and then some) its operating income in the fiscal year ended March 31, 2016 over figures posted the previous 12 months, as well as boost earnings before taxes by no less than 666.5 percent, to roughly $2.7 billion.
Believe it or not, the largest hike in profits in nearly a decade came despite the traditionally lucrative pictures division underperforming on major box-office flops like “The Walk” and “The Brothers Grimsby”, not to mention lagging smartphone sales.
The latter decreased a whopping 20 percent year-on-year, primarily due to a “strategic decision not to pursue scale in order to improve profitability.” The thing is Sony’s mobile communications segment didn’t succeed in its mission to earn… something by reducing volumes either, yielding an operating loss of a little over half a billion dollars (61.4 billion yen).
Granted, that’s significantly down from the previous year’s 217.6 billion yen deficit, but if Sony only aims to trim its mobile losses, the best plan would be to back out of the smartphone-making business and get it over with. No risks, no losses, right?
Let’s not wrap up before highlighting the very strong performance of the Game & Network Services division, aka home and portable game consoles, plus game, video and music content. Sony’s biggest cash cow pulled off an increase in income from 48.1 to 88.7 billion yen, which converts to around $785 million. Long live the PlayStation!