Sony Games Has Big Year

One of the reasons the travel industry had such a tough time last year might have been all those computer games consumers were buying. Who can leave home with all that new technology to play with?

For its part, entertainment giant Sony announced today that 2003 was a banner year for its PlayStation 2 platform. With an installed base of more than 24.5 million on PS2 and more than 37 million PS2 gamers, Sony Computer Entertainment America Inc. says demand for PlayStation software reached an all-time high in 2003, with total sales nearing 100 million units. That figure was driven by a more than 24% increase in PS2 software sales year-over-year.

“With record-breaking software sales again this year, our partners are realizing the benefits of aligning with the [PS2 brand],” says Jack Tretton, exec. VP of Sony Computer Entertainment America. “In 2004, we will continue to evolve our platforms and challenge the publishing community to push themselves even further to leverage the incredible power of PlayStation.”

PlayStation 2 comprises more than 66% of the home console market share, with its closest competitor at less than 20% according to research from the NPD Group.

Creating a unique opportunity for content providers and third party publishers, the PlayStation 2 online community has grown to more than 2.4 million connected consoles in North America. The first online console community is also the most popular, with the PlayStation 2 online base growing nearly three times as fast as that of Microsoft’s Xbox Live. As the online community grows in popularity, demand for online titles are hitting an all-time high, as seven of the top-10 PlayStation 2 software titles in December were online enabled, according to NPD. PlayStation 2 online devotees purchased first party titles such as SOCOM II: U.S. Navy SEALs and third party online fare including Need for Speed Underground and Medal of Honor Rising Sun from Electronic Arts.