PlayStation to Increase Focus on Mobile and Social; 10 PlayStation IPs to Be Adapted for Cinema/TV

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During Sony's Corporate Strategy Meeting for 2021, we learned a great deal about the company's upcoming plans for PlayStation and PlayStation-related activities.

First of all, Sony announced it will invest 2 trillion yen (roughly $18.4 billion) in the next three years. The overarching goal is to grow the company's ecosystem from 160 million customers connected to the various Sony services all the way up to 1 billion customers.

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To do that, there will be an increased synergy between the various divisions. For example, the highly successful anime Demon Slayer will be expanded to become a feature film and eventually a game, too. We also learned that 10 PlayStation IPs are already in the works to be adapted for cinema and/or TV as part of PlayStation Productions; the first slated to release is Uncharted, due to debut in theaters on February 18th, 2022.

Perhaps the most interesting remarks point to an increased focus to expand PlayStation in the mobile and social spaces, as mentioned by Sony president Kenichiro Yoshida.

In addition to what we do in the services space around anime and games, what we do in the mobile and social spaces will be crucial to expanding the world of people to whom we deliver Kando. I believe this is indispensable to the development of the PlayStation Community.

First, I will discuss mobile. We are already deploying our anime related IP in the form of mobile games. Fate/Grand Order (FGO) is a prime example of this.

FGO has become a hit in China through our collaboration with Bilibili. We will continue to actively release mobile games based on anime-related IP around the world. And we will further focus on deploying PlayStationʼs proprietary IP to mobile as well.

Next is social, which is making genres more seamless as it convergences with entertainment. Sony is already active in the social space as is shown on this slide. Greater social engagement has fundamentally changed how content is made and how it is disseminated, and it has affected more than just content ‒ it is facilitating direct connections between creators and users.

One of the next big challenges for Sony is to make the PlayStation more social. Our efforts in the services, mobile and social arenas are crucial to expanding the world that Sony will fill with emotion, and that is especially the case for PlayStation.

Sony Interactive Entertainment CEO Jim Ryan also chimed in on these two focus areas, as you can read below.

Another important area is the convergence of Social and Entertainment, which is making
communication an increasingly critical component of entertainment. Our investment in
Discord is another example of the convergence of social and entertainment; fan
reception to this news has been positive, indicating a desire to expand the social aspects
of gaming.

The content developed by PlayStation Studios these past 25 years has created a wealth
of IP and provided PlayStation with immersive experiences that evoke emotions and
bring players on a journey. We have been thinking about how players enjoy our content
and have had some early success with experimenting with mobile games and apps to
provide more choice to gamers.

Mobile is just one of the areas we are exploring to reach millions of gamers beyond our
platforms. PlayStation has a huge catalog of diverse first-party IP that can transition to
smartphone gaming and complement our AAA games or live service games. We are
exploring the mobile market with some wonderful PlayStation franchises so please stay
tuned. Through investments in IP, Group collaboration within Sony, investment in Social
and Mobile, we are excited for the opportunity to continue to expand our community
and welcome millions of new gamers to the PlayStation family.

Other items of interest include the already known goal to grow PlayStation Now and PlayStation Plus (which reached 47.6 million subscribers in March 2021), as well as brief updates on the next-generation PlayStation VR and Sony AI division efforts. For the next-gen PSVR, we learned that it will use the 'latest sensing technology'. Regarding the AI research division, established in late 2019, Sony's first-party studios have begun collaborating with the researchers to use reinforcement learning for Game AI agents that could make games even richer and more enjoyable.

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