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Sony’s PlayStation division loses $2.8 billion over the full year. This is down from a $429 million profit made in 2011. The PlayStation 3 price drop and low console sales are the main culprits. The PlayStation 3 sold 13.9 million units in 2012 compared to 14.3 in 2011.
PlayStation 3 software sales actually increased from 2011’s 147.9 million to 156.6 million. The entire Sony company lost $5.74 billon for the full year, which ended in March. [Source: Games Industry International]
Microsoft is working on Kinect-controlled internet browsing for the Xbox 360. The new software would allow owners to use voice and motion controls to navigate Microsoft’s Internet Explorer, but you can still surf the web from your couch without the Kinect. We expect Microsoft to expose more details, including a launch date, at next month’s E3 conference. [Source: The Verge]
Japanese mobile-social game operators take hit. The stock prices of Japan’s big mobile social gaming networks, Gree and DeNA, took a tumble this week as regulators scrutinized their sales methods. Japan’s equivalent of the Federal Trade Commission said it was reviewing the “complete gacha” practice, where users pay money in virtual tokens to see if they can land a jackpot in virtual goods. The Japan Consumer Affairs Agency said it was looking into whether that amounted to illegal gambling, and when the investigation surfaced, the stock prices fell 22 percent over three days. But the stocks rose again today as both companies pledged to abandon the system by May 31. Gree, meanwhile, said it tripled sales to more than $578 million in its most recent quarter. [Source: Bloomberg]
GamesBeat 2012 is VentureBeat’s fourth annual conference on disruption in the video game market. This year we’re calling on speakers from the hottest mobile, social, PC, and console companies to debate new ways to stay on pace with changing consumer tastes and platforms. Join 500+ execs, investors, analysts, entrepreneurs, and press as we explore the gaming industry’s latest trends and newest monetization opportunities. The event takes place July 10-11 in San Francisco, and you can get your early-bird tickets here.