Microsoft games

Microsoft’s Entertainment and Devices Division, which includes the Xbox 360 console, made some major gains for the company — even as sales of traditional console games and hardware has stagnated over the past year.

In the company’s financial report for its fiscal third quarter 2013, Microsoft revealed that it generated $2.53 billion in revenue through the Xbox division. That’s an increase of 56 percent from the same period in 2012. The Entertainment and Device Division also includes Windows Phone and Skype.

Additionally, the global conglomerate revealed that Xbox Live now has 46 million members, but it didn’t specify how many of those are of the paid-subscriber variety. Either way, that number is up 18 percent from last year.

“Our diverse business continues to deliver solid financial results, even as we navigate the evolving device market,” Microsoft chief financial officer Peter Klein (who is leaving the company) said in a statement. “Looking ahead, we will continue to invest in long-term growth opportunities to drive our devices and services strategy forward and deliver ongoing value to shareholders.”

Microsoft is winding down the Xbox 360 as the next generation of consoles approaches. The Xbox 360 is the dominant platform right now, but as gamers move on to the next big thing, Sony and potential new threats from Apple, Valve, and others will try to take major chunks of the $15 billion gaming industry away from Microsoft.

Industry sources inform us that Microsoft will hold a major event in May to announce the next Xbox console.