• chevron_right

      Windows, hardware, Xbox sales are dim spots in a solid Microsoft earnings report / ArsTechnica · Wednesday, 26 July, 2023 - 18:21 · 1 minute

    Windows, hardware, Xbox sales are dim spots in a solid Microsoft earnings report

    Enlarge (credit: Getty Images)

    It has been a tough year for PC companies and companies that make PC components. Companies like Intel, AMD, and Nvidia have all reported big drops in revenue from the hardware that they sell to consumers (though the hardware they sell to other businesses is often doing better).

    Microsoft contributed another data point to that trend today , with fourth-quarter 2023 financial results that showed modest growth (revenue up 8 percent year over year, from $51.9 billion to $56.2 billion), but no thanks to its consumer software and hardware businesses.

    Revenue from the company's More Personal Computing division, which encompasses Windows licenses, Surface PCs and other accessories, Xbox hardware and software and services, and ad revenue, was down 4 percent year over year. This decrease was driven mostly by a drop in sales of Windows licenses to PC makers (down 12 percent because of "PC market weakness") and by reduced hardware sales (down 20 percent, though the company didn't say how much of this drop came from its accessory business and how much came from Surface PCs). Microsoft makes its own PCs and PC accessories and sells the software that most other PC makers use on their hardware, so when the entire PC ecosystem is doing poorly, Microsoft gets hit twice.

    Read 4 remaining paragraphs | Comments

    • chevron_right

      Vizio TV buyers are becoming the product Vizio sells, not just its customers

      Samuel Axon · / ArsTechnica · Wednesday, 12 May, 2021 - 22:01

    Promotional image for widescreen television set.

    Enlarge / Vizio's 65-inch 4K OLED TV. (credit: Vizio )

    Over the past several years, TV-maker Vizio has achieved a reputation among home theater enthusiasts as the company that makes TVs that provide superior picture quality relative to their cost. While the most expensive TVs from Samsung and LG beat Vizio's in quality assessment by reviewers, Vizio is widely regarded as one of the best bang-for-buck brands.

    But for consumers, those competitive prices may come with a downside: becoming subject to targeted advertising and monetized personal data collection. As reported previously on Engadget , Vizio just posted its first public earnings report, wherein it revealed that profits from the part of its business that is built around collecting and selling user data as well as targeting advertising at users totaled $38.4 million in the quarter.

    That's less than the $48.2 million of profit generated by device sales in the same quarter, but data and advertising profits grew significantly year-over-year while actual device sales grew comparatively slowly. These digital products are still nowhere close to device sales in total revenue, however; the data and ad-related business unit (dubbed Platform+) added up to only 7.2 percent of global revenue.

    Read 4 remaining paragraphs | Comments

    • chevron_right

      Sony shipped 4.5M PS5s in 2020 but is struggling to speed up production

      Kyle Orland · / ArsTechnica · Wednesday, 3 February, 2021 - 17:18 · 1 minute

    PlayStation 4 vs PlayStation 5 comparison pic, horizontal orientation

    Enlarge (credit: Sam Machkovech)

    Sony shipped 4.5 million PlayStation 5 consoles worldwide through the end of 2020, the company revealed in an earnings report Wednesday. The number is broadly comparable to the 4.5 million PS4 consoles shipped in that system's 2013 holiday launch quarter . But potential PS5 customers shouldn't expect the rate of production to increase, Sony said, despite widespread retail sellouts that have led to substantial secondhand markups .

    "It is difficult for us to increase production of the PS5 amid the shortage of semiconductors and other components," Sony CFO Hiroki Totoki said during a briefing accompanying the results. "We have not been able to fully meet the high level of demand from customers [but] we continue to do everything in our power to ship as many units as possible to customers who are waiting for a PS5."

    Overall, Sony's Game and Network Services division saw its holiday quarter profits increase nearly 50 percent year over year. The company now forecasts the best fiscal year performance for the gaming division in company history, thanks in large part to an increase in PlayStation Plus subscriptions (which now sit at 47.4 million). A full 87 percent of PS5 owners so far subscribe to PlayStation Plus, Sony said, making those subscriptions key to the company's profits going forward.

    Read 7 remaining paragraphs | Comments

    • chevron_right

      Microsoft earnings: Xbox hardware sales shot up 86% with Series X/S

      Samuel Axon · / ArsTechnica · Wednesday, 27 January, 2021 - 19:40 · 1 minute

    The Xbox Series X, which launched in November.

    Enlarge / The Xbox Series X, which launched in November. (credit: Sam Machkovech )

    Microsoft delivered its earnings report for Q2 2021 yesterday, and the company has continued its sprint of very strong quarters, again driven primarily by Azure and the cloud. But that same old story isn't the only one here: the report also tells us a thing or two about the new Xbox's performance, as well as Windows and Office.

    Overall, Microsoft beat analyst expectations. The company's top-level revenue grew 17 percent year over year, reaching $43.08 billion. Analysts had expected $40.18 billion. $14.6 billion of that was from the business segment Microsoft calls "Intelligent Cloud," which most notably includes Azure but also some other professional services like GitHub.

    Cloud wasn't the only positive story, though. Personal Computing including Windows, Xbox, and Surface grew 15 percent compared to the previous year to just over $15 billion. That included an 86 percent increase in Xbox hardware sales, as well as a 40 percent increase in Xbox content and surfaces—the former of those includes the launch of the Xbox Series X/S consoles in November, and the latter includes Game Pass, which Microsoft has been pushing hard as a core value proposition for the Xbox game platform.

    Read 5 remaining paragraphs | Comments