Sony PlayStation 4 Sales Top 2.1 Million as Hirai Seeks Revival

Sony Corp. sold more than 2.1 million PlayStation 4 game consoles globally since its release last month as Chief Executive Officer Kazuo Hirai seeks to revive the company’s consumer electronics business.

About 700,000 units were sold in Europe and Australasia as of Dec. 1 after the console went on sale in those markets on Nov. 29, the Tokyo-based company said in a statement today. Sony sold more than 1 million PS4s in the first 24 hours of its release in North America on Nov. 15.

Hirai, who surprised investors in October with a second-quarter loss, is trying to turn around the company with holiday console sales after cutting forecasts for televisions, cameras and computers. Sony is trying to differentiate its PS4 gaming machine -- which sells for $399 in the U.S. compared with $499 for Microsoft Corp.’s Xbox One -- by offering a wider selection of popular and eclectic titles.

“A lower price than Microsoft’s Xbox One is probably helping boost sales of the PS4,” Keita Wakabayashi, an analyst at Mito Securities Co. in Tokyo said by phone. “PS4 sales will certainly help Sony.”

Sony is confident it can meet analysts sales estimates of 3 million units by year-end and its own target of 5 million units by March, Jack Tretton, president and chief executive officer of the company’s U.S. computer entertainment division, said Nov. 11.

Sony’s previous version of the console, the PS3, sold 197,000 consoles in the first month after it was released in the U.S. on Nov. 17, 2006, NPD Group, which tracked sales of video games and consoles, said at the time.

The PS4 is now available in 32 countries.

“Demand remains incredibly strong and continues to overwhelm the supply worldwide,” Sony Computer Entertainment President Andrew House said in the statement. “We are diligently working to meet those growing demands and to deliver additional PS4 units.”

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