Iwata Discusses 3DS Success or Lack Thereof
Doesn't talk about lying to the public about the 3DS XL.
Nintendo President Satoru Iwata discussed the success of the 3DS in Japan, Europe, and the United States in a recent shareholders' Q&A session. with the announcement of a 3DS XL, it's no wonder Nintendo is touching on the current status of the handheld. The 3DS has been received differently in the three regions, and Iwata explained the sales figures in greater detail.
“Sales of the Nintendo 3DS are constant in Japan and in fact we could say the sales volume is exceeding our forecast at the start of this fiscal year," Iwata said. "After the beginning of this calendar year, the average unit sales have been 83,000 units on a weekly basis. This means that about 55 percent of all gaming hardware sales in Japan consist of the Nintendo 3DS."
Those are good numbers to have, but aren't reflected in Europe and the US, with the 3DS only currently accounting for 20 percent of sales in both territories. Iwata explained that the Japanese market is much more involved with handheld gaming. According to him although the "momentum in the U.S. and Europe is currently weak," this is a scenario shared with a previous Nintendo handheld.
“As it was the case with the Nintendo DS, it took a much longer time for the platform to gain sales momentum in the U.S. than in Japan,” Iwata explained. “The Nintendo DS gained momentum within a year in Japan; however, it took more than two years in the U.S. and in the end the total sales of the Nintendo DS exceeded the Wii there.”
So Nintendo sees a light at the end of the 3DS-slump tunnel in Europe and the US. Iwata also discussed how upcoming software and the 3DS XL are potential sales boosters for Nintendo's handheld moment.
“With the Nintendo 3DS XL I just spoke about and our key titles, such as New Super Mario Bros. 2, to be released globally this summer, one of our immediate top-priority missions is to create sales momentum which can wipe this type of concern away at an early stage," he said. Iwata then went on to reiterate what Nintendo has always stood for - providing a unique experience that sets them apart from competitors.
“In order for dedicated video game hardware to be needed continuously, it is necessary to provide games with fun elements unique to a certain video game system which cannot be realized on smartphone devices,” Iwata concluded. “We would like to introduce such games one after another.”