Sony Group will increase spending on research and development in the gaming segment as it seeks to improve technology in games with live communication and the new field of “augmented reality” that combines the physical and digital worlds. This is reported by Nikkei Asia.

In the fiscal year ending March 2024, the company will invest 300 billion yen (about $2.13 billion) in research and development for its gaming segment.

This figure exceeds the ¥271.1 billion spent on game development last fiscal year. This fiscal year, Sony Group plans to spend ¥760 billion on company-wide research and development, up 3% from last year.

Games are a core part of Sony’s business. Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization of the company’s gaming business totaled about 337 billion yen last fiscal year, up more than 60% from five years ago.

Sony’s shift from a hardware focus to a subscription-based business model is prompting the company to ramp up research and development. Long reliant on sales of its PlayStation game console, the company will focus on online services that allow customers to buy add-ons for games streamed over the Internet.

So far, Sony has yet to find success in online gaming, relying mostly on sequels to traditional games for software sales.