Facebook and Sony to Boost Output of Their Upcoming Gaming Devices

Facebook and Sony are gearing up to increase their output of the Oculus Rift and the PlayStation 5, respectively, to meet demand sparked by the coronavirus pandemic.
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Facebook  (FB) - Get Report and Sony  (SNE) - Get Report are reportedly preparing to increase output of upcoming gaming devices by as much as 50%,.

Facebook was up slightly Wednesday to $240.96, while Sony shares were up 2.3% to $76.20.

Facebook's Oculus, which leads the world in virtual reality headsets by market share, is eyeing growth of at least 50% from a year ago for the latest version of its head-mounted virtual-reality devices, pushing production to two million units, according to the Nikkei Asian Review.

Sony has also raised production orders for its upcoming PlayStation 5 to around nine million units, from the roughly six million units it had planned in the spring, the publication reported, citing unnamed sources.

The PlayStation 5 is the first completely new generation of the console in seven years, after the company launched the PlayStation 4 in 2013 and an upgrade in 2016.

Facebook has about a 35% market share of the emerging VR market, and its first all-in-one VR gaming system with controllers -- Oculus Quest -- became a hit after it launched in May 2019 with a starting price of $399.

Last month, Facebook said it was dumping the Oculus Go, its entry-level self-contained virtual-reality headset launched in 2018 at a starting price of $199, in favor of the more expensive and advanced Oculus Quest and Oculus Rift.   

Facebook bought VR startup Oculus for $2 billion in 2014.

The gaming industry has seen record gains due to the coronavirus pandemic and the accompanying social distancing and self-quarantine requirements. 

Overall total industry consumer spending on video gaming in the U.S. reached a record $10.86 billion in the first quarter of 2020, up 9% from a year ago, according to a study by the NDP Group.

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