Sony is cutting down its planned production of the forthcoming PlayStation 5 by 4 million units this fiscal year, bringing its total output to 11 million by the end of March, Bloomberg reported. The cut stems from issues with Sony’s “custom-designed system-on-chip.”
Sony later denied the Bloomberg report. “While we do not release details related to manufacturing, the information provided by Bloomberg is false,” a Sony spokesperson said in a statement. “We have not changed the production number for PlayStation 5 since the start of mass production.”
With the product set to imminently — perhaps as soon as Sept. 16 — the company had previously planned to boost its production from 5 to 6 million by the end of March to about 10 million units by the end of December. The move came as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic increasing demand for gaming with consumers stuck at home.
Sony’s next-gen console looks radically different than its predecessors, featuring a sleek, molded white outer casing with a black inner box. Though its final price point and exact release date has yet to be announced, the Tokyo-based company was reportedly struggling to keep costs down due to the high price of component parts.
In addition to the “fat” PS5 console, Sony will also be releasing a digital-only version without an optical disk drive, which will come at a lower price point.
Multiple reports have indicated that the PS5 could end up costing more than $500, but that Sony was perhaps waiting on rival Microsoft to price its upcoming releases.
Last week, however, Microsoft announced that the Xbox Series S will be $299 and the Xbox Series X $499, which could put pressure on Sony to keep the PS5 price lower than expected.
The PS4 was $400 when it debuted. It sold over 7.5 million units from November 2013 to March 2014 and recently surpassed the original PlayStation in total sales at over 110 million units sold. The PS2 is the best-selling console in history with over 155 million units sold.
Total industry consumer spending on video gaming in the U.S. reached a second quarter record $11.6 billion in 2020, according to a study from the NPD Group, up 30% from the same period last year, and 7% from the first quarter of 2020.
Hardware sales alone increased 57%, to $848 million.