As previously announced, the Nintendo 3DS will go on sale February 26 in Japan. And between that launch and March 31, Nintendo expects to sell 4 million units. That is 4 million units in about a month. Nintendo added that they expect to sell 15 million software units — including any packed-in game(s) – during that same period.
Normally, if a major electronics company said they expected to sell 4 million units of a piece of equipment in a mere month at a suggested $300 price point, I would say they are crazy. For example, while I know an iPad is more expensive than $300, Apple “only” sold 1 million iPads during its first month, and that was considered a pretty successful launch. Apple did, however, manage to sell 3 million iPhone 4s during its first month. So that means if you combined all the iPhone 4s and the iPads sold in their first month of availability, yeah, that is what Nintendo is expecting out of the 3DS in its first month.
Though Nintendo‘s recent track record puts them well outside what I would consider “normal” as described above, especially their handheld track record. Seriously, if anyone can pull of these types of sales, Nintendo with the 3DS is likely the most capable. I think the 3DS could still appeal to all those “casual” gamers out there with a DS and the more “hardcore” gamers too. Look at the lineup of games, Super Street Fighter 4 3D Edition, Mega Man Legends, some Resident Evil and even Metal Gear — just to touch on a few. I think Nintendo might finally have a system that could appeal to everyone in the “blue ocean” they often talk about, from super casual to the very hardcore.
Sure the $300 price point might put some consumers off initially, but the 3DS is packing some serious tech. And really, I believe that once more people get a chance to see the system in action like Game Rant did at E3 2010, more and more will line up ready to pay.
What do you Ranters think? Do you think the 4 million units-in-a-month number is obtainable? Do you plan on being one of those 4 million, assuming you are able to get your hands on one?
The Nintendo 3DS will be available in Japan on February 26, 2011 for 25,000 Yen. A North American release date has not yet been announced.