PlayStation was Sony's biggest earner in 2014


Up 33 percent year-over-year

Sony’s fiscal year ended at the close of March, and the Japanese conglomerate just released its annual report. 2014 was a good year for PlayStation — so much so that it holds the mantle as Sony’s biggest earner, as it drove the most revenue of any division in the company.

Year-over-year numbers show a leap of 33 percent in revenue for the Games and Network Services branch, the segment that contains PlayStation. All in all, that works out to a revenue stream of $11.5 billion for the 12-month period.

The clear factor behind the growth was the substantial sales figures of the PlayStation 4. It ended the year with 14.8 million units sold. Its lifetime total is 22.3 million. Fiscal year 2014 was the first full year in which the PS4 was available on store shelves.

While Sony jumped out to a considerable lead in the sales race against Microsoft, recent statistics show that the two console manufacturers’ sales numbers may be similar over the course of the past nine months or so. During the last three quarters, Microsoft has sold 10.7 million Xbox Ones. All variables constant, that’s near the pace Sony’s set for 14.8 million PS4s in four quarters. However, Microsoft’s moved most of its consoles at a discounted rate, which has gouged its revenue earned.

Much of PlayStation’s money was driven by console sales, but other facets played a large role. Software sales jumped to $3.9 billion — almost a 22% bump over fiscal 2013. Network services revenue such as PlayStation Plus subscriptions contributed approximately $3 billion, a significant increase compared to the $1.7 billion it raked in the previous year.

Looking forward, Sony doesn’t expect PlayStation to necessarily replicate its success in fiscal year 2015. While it’s forecasted that software sales will remain relatively consistent, Sony anticipates that operating income will decrease due to lowered PS3 platform sales that PS4 won’t quite be able to make up for.

Sony year-end results for fiscal year 2014 [Sony]