What Will The PlayStation 5 Cost? Part Scarcity Could Mean Consumers Pay More
A new report from Bloomberg says the PlayStation 5's manufacturing costs are being driven up by part scarcity. Higher manufacturing costs usually mean higher prices for retailers — but Sony might not let that happen, the report says.
According to Bloomberg's Sony sources, it currently costs $450 to make one PlayStation 5 console, and that's down to two main parts. The DRAM and NAND flash memory units are harder to come by and thusly cost more.
This scarcity isn't because of the coronavirus, though. Instead, analysts say it's down to the next generation of smartphone devices launching soon.
Another factor driving costs a bit higher is the console's cooling system. Bloomberg says Sony is opting for a slightly more expensive cooling unit to ensure there's no overheating issue. After the PlayStation 3's persistent problem with the yellow light of death, that's good news given what the PS5's capabilities are supposed to be.
All this means consumers might end up paying between $470 and $499 for the PlayStation 5, though Bloomberg also says Sony is keen to keep that from happening. Chief Financial Officer Hiroki Totoki said, “We must keep PlayStation 5’s bill of materials under our control and we need to make the correct number of units in the initial production."
Sony CEO Kenichiro Yoshida said the key to success is software sales and user numbers, not hardware units sold. Selling consoles at a loss is acceptable so long as consumers adopt the new system and purchase games for it.
Sony also appears to be looking at the upcoming generation shift in a different way. The changeover to the PlayStation 5 is something the company expects to be a gradual trend, not an immediate switch, and much of the software released during the PlayStation 5 launch period will be playable on the PlayStation 4 as well. That means software sales will still be high, Sony hopes, so selling the console at a loss wouldn't be catastrophic.
Either way, Bloomberg says we might get some more concrete news in April, when Sony releases its outlook for the next fiscal year's sales, assuming it doesn't keep quiet to see what Microsoft does first instead.
One other thing of note: remember that new PlayStation VR story we reported on a while back? Bloomberg says it's real and is planned for release shortly after the PS5. Unfortunately, we still don't know what the PS5 will look like, though we can probably discount that "leaked" icon on the Japanese PlayStation website as being anywhere near legitimate.
Stay tuned to GameSkinny for more PlayStation 5 news as it develops.