Switch is Now Nintendo’s Best-Selling Console of All-Time

Posted on February 3, 2022 by Paul Thurrott in Games with 10 Comments

The Nintendo Switch Has Upended the Video Game Market

As part of its quarterly earnings report, Nintendo revealed that it has now sold over 103.5 million Switch consoles, making it the best-selling Nintendo console of all time.

“During the nine months [ending] December 31, 2021, all three Switch models sold well while maintaining a good sales balance,” a dryly worded Nintendo filing reads. “We will continue to convey the appeal of the three models and work to further expand the install base.”

Nintendo sold 10.7 million Switch consoles in the fourth quarter of 2021, bringing the lifetime total to 103.54 million units shipped, surpassing the Nintendo Wii’s 101.63 million units. That represents an 8 percent decline when compared to the same quarter one year ago. But still three times the number of consoles that Sony was able to sell in the same time period.

Like Sony, however, Nintendo is revising its console sales estimates for the current fiscal year downward, in this case by 1 million units to a total of 23 million units. That’s a relatively minor change, and it suggests that Nintendo isn’t as impacted by the supply crisis as are companies that needed more expensive and higher-end components.

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Comments (10)

10 responses to “Switch is Now Nintendo’s Best-Selling Console of All-Time”

  1. Mike_Peluso

    Sales numbers are still on a slide for Nintendo if you consider that the Switch is effectively two consoles. Going back to the Wii/DS days, the Wii sold 101.63 million and the DS sold 154.02 million, total of 255.65 million units. I don't know if the Switch will hit that number or even come close to it. That being said, it still has a good chance at being the best selling single console of all time.

    • jgraebner

      In all fairness, though, I'm sure there was a tremendous overlap between Wii and DS purchasers. Many households that had one had the other as well.

  2. MoopMeep

    Its pretty amazing... PS4 and xbox one came out late 2013 and switch came out early 2017.

    It has sold twice as many units as xbox one and has almost caught up to ps4 sales.

    The hardware is simpler, so easier to make compared to xbox series and ps5. So its hard to get the newest consoles but not as bad to find a switch. Nintendo has a lot of the best selling games of all time too (mario kart 8, animal crossing, bunch of pokemon games)

    • Jim Lewis

      You didn't mention Breath of the Wild! It's a fantastic game. There's a lot of drudgery farming stuff you need for upgrades and food/elixir buffs but the imagination, level of detail, and physics that went into the game are amazing. It would be great if they someday turn it into a virtual reality game for a PC or a future generation console. It's the only Nintendo Switch game I've ever played but with the DLC expansion pack, it might take me the rest of my life to complete-vast, open world! And LevelUp Royal's YouTube videos are a great way to get the most out of the game when you're ready to leave the Great Plateau (how to get a 5-Star horse right from the start). And getting NFC amiibo cards on Amazon for ~$20 helps provide manna from Heaven and cut down on farming drudgery. There are certain ways of rolling your own amiibo discs using your phone NFC, allowing inexpensive multiple copies of an amiibo (which, except for Wolf Link, you're only allowed to use 1x per day and that way, you can get valuable stuff, say, that Zelda from SuperSmash Brothers coughs up and just go on to another Zelda SSB disc to try to get something else on the same day). The official Piggyback book (Simon & Schuster subsidiary) is a work of art, too! You can use an Xbox controller, but I got the Switch Pro controller. Unfortunately, with the Switch controllers, the A & B button positions are switched but it helps to have B under X for paragliding maneuvers.

  3. LT1 Z51

    Switch is the first Nintendo Console I don't own. Most (if not all) the good games are rehashed from WiiU (which was a commercial failure, but I won one). Breath of the Wild 2 might get me to update.

    • christianwilson

      Same here. I've owned every Nintendo platform (I still have a Virtual Boy), but I have yet to buy a Switch. As of now, I have no intention of doing so. It's a great system, no doubt, but as I mentioned in the comments on a recent PS5 post, I don't have time to keep up with everything anymore, so I've settled on Xbox.

      The Wii U was criminally underrated and I played a lot of great games on it. Thankfully, they found their way to the Switch eventually so others got to enjoy them.

  4. crunchyfrog

    The Switch is a fantastic device and love traveling with it. I have a hunch that Nintendo may be coming out with a nicely updated version sometime late this year or possibly early next year. That's the hope at least.

    Of course, I do have a Steam Deck reservation that is supposed to ready in Q2 this year so I may be placated enough to skip any Switch upgrades for a long while.

  5. Daekar

    In my opinion, the Switch + PC is the best combination for experiencing everything interesting in gaming. The quality of Nintendo's first part titles is just unmatched, there is no competition. Even the recent Metroid game was great.

  6. David Lowndes

    It's hard for the PS5 to outsell the Switch when you can't buy one anywhere.

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