Nintendo said that it has now sold over 125 million Switch consoles, though sales of the 6-year-old video game device are slowing dramatically. The firm sold 18 million units in the previous fiscal year and now expects to sell 15 million units this fiscal year, below expectations.
The numbers arrived as part of the firm’s quarterly earnings report, in which Nintendo delivered a gross profit of $6.6 billion on revenues of $11.8 billion.
“Sustaining the Switch’s sales momentum will be difficult in its seventh year,” Nintendo president Shuntaro Furukawa said. “Our goal of selling 15 million units this fiscal year is a bit of a stretch. But we will do our best to bolster demand going into the holiday season so that we can achieve the goal.”
There seems to be a lot of negativity around Switch sales for some reason, but these are impressive numbers for a device this old that also competes in some ways against much more powerful videogame consoles from Sony and Microsoft. The issue, of course, is that sales are now falling year over year: Switch sales fell over 22 percent last year and will fall about 17 percent this year if Nintendo’s forecast holds true.
There is also some frustration that Nintendo hasn’t released a more powerful Switch, rumored to be called Switch Pro, though the firm has indicated that it intends to move forward with a new console generation instead. It did ship a version with an OLED display in 2021 and a less expensive Switch Lite model in 2019.
Despite all this, it’s hard to understate how successful this product has been for Nintendo: only the PlayStation 2, with at least 155 million units sold, and the Nintendo DS, at 154 million units, have outsold it in the history of videogame hardware. And while Sony’s latest console, the PlayStation 5, is surging just as the Switch is fading, it’s not even in the same ballpark, with just 38.5 million units sold. (Yes, different types of products and different situations.)
And it’s not just the hardware: Nintendo has sold over 1 billion first- and third-party software Switch titles since the device’s launch in 2017, 214 million units of which were sold in the previous fiscal year. Pokémon Scarlet/Violet, which launched in November, has sold 22.1 million units so far, and Splatoon 3 has sold 11 million units since its September launch. 35 Switch titles have sold over one million units in the past year. Over 48 percent of all Switch software sales are now digital.