The Nintendo Switch is expected to sell 40 million units by 2020

2 min read


New hardware, who dis? There’s something exciting about the launch of a new console from one of the big three, with a level of excitement in the air that is thick enough to taste at times. Hmmm, tastes like teen spirit because I may be waiting in line right now for the Nirvana 64. Anyway this year sees Nintendo step up to the plate with the Switch. A home console under the sheets and a handheld in the streets, Nintendo needs this device to succeed in all the areas where the Wii U utterly failed.

And succeed it might! Because according to some guesstimating from research firm DFC Intelligence, the Switch could sell over 40 million units by the time 2020 comes to an end. According to that’d be triple what the Wii U sold in its first four years, 13.36 million units – paling when compared to the lifetime sales of the Nintendo Wii which shifted 100 million units.

“Demand is expected to be strong and the major issue will be whether the system can attract a broad audience starting in the holiday sales season of 2017,” the DFC report said.

The Switch is a compelling piece of hardware that could potentially reach a much larger addressable market. However given the limited software and Nintendo’s poor recent track record of introducing new products we have tempered our forecasts to be conservative.

That’s not a bad estimate then. While the Switch will launch with two million consoles available and less than ten games to begin with, it’ll hopefully shore up a decent library of titles by the holiday season. That’s where the real money is. I’m at a point now where I’m sill hungry for the console, but my technolust can wait a few more months for it. Unlike Al, who is already this close to getting a Triforce tattoo as he sips further on that Legend of Zelda kool-aid.

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Last Updated: January 23, 2017

Darryn Bonthuys

Something wrong gentlemen? You come here prepared to read the words of a madman, and instead found a lunatic obsessed with comics, Batman and Raul Julia’s M Bison performance in the 1994 Street Fighter movie? Fine! Keep your bio! In fact, now might be a good time to pray to it!

  • I suspect it is set for 2020 cause a lot of people might not pick it up on release due to so much grey areas around local price, games and performance

  • MonsterCheddar

    Switch Bitch…..Bleh bleh bleh

    • Hammersteyn

      Maybe they called it Switch to trick people in switching consoles?

      • MonsterCheddar

        They may take my life, but they will never take my XBONE!!!!!!!!

        • Hammersteyn

          They won;t have to, it’l break on it’s own 😛

          • MonsterCheddar

            Never. Its too big

          • Hammersteyn


  • Hammersteyn

    So around four times as many as the WIIU sold?

    • MonsterCheddar


    • I think the’re being as optimistic as possible because they are basically cannibalizing their DS market.

      But yes, I think that’s an insane number.

      • PurplePariah

        To be fair, the 3DS is pretty old at this point. This is an upgrade to both the 3DS and the Wii U, basically. Which means it’s drawing on 2 sets of bases. People keep forgetting the mobile part, and how integral that is.

        I think, honestly, that target is reachable. But it will depend on the games entirely (which yeah I Know people know, but meh).

  • MonsterCheddar

    @Darryn_Bonthuys:disqus I hope you do not go outside like that. Someone is going to beat you up.

    • Hammersteyn

      Squirrel Girl does bully him so

  • Original Heretic

    Did their parents never ever teach them about chicken counting and egg hatching? They can expect 100 million sales. But will they actually get them?

    • PurplePariah

      This is an independent research company, not Nintendo themselves. Nintendo are only making 2 million to start, worldwide. I think that’s conservative enough.

  • Admiral Chief

    Heh, 2020 sounds like science fiction until you see that we are in 2017…

    • Hammersteyn

      Blade Runner is set in 2019 O_o

      • Admiral Chief


        Time flies, and all we have to show for it are wrinkles and grey hairs

        • Hammersteyn

          And a massive backlog of unfinished games

          • Admiral Chief

            I bought something today that I have never done before……

            Season pass!

          • You forgot to mention it was for a Ubisoft game

          • Admiral Chief

            Indeed, I’ve NEVER bought a season pass before, irrespective of where it came from

          • Hammersteyn

            NOOOOOOOOOO! for which game?

          • Admiral Chief

            Division. R236
            Also, got the game for free, so meh, not too bad then

          • Hammersteyn

            True, that game wasn’t for me though

  • By 2020 everyone would have bought at least 50 new controllers. A good long game…

  • Viper_ZA

    I’m sure OLX & Gumtree will have quite a few floating around within the first few days of local release!

  • Skittle

    Buy 2020 it will be cheap enough to buy.

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