Satoru Iwata, Nintendo’s Japanese overseer has been looking a little sullen lately. Probably has something to do with Nintendo’s first profit decline in six years. Not only are Wii sales flagging worldwide – although most notably in Japan, but PS3 sales are up. Way up! So much so that Iwata’s had to concede the fact that they’re now competing directly with Sony in their home territory.
The console race is indeed a lot closer than it was just a year ago; In a meeting with investors, none of who can be presumed to be smiling, Iwata explained that "A notable dip can be seen in sales of Wii this yearâ€¦â€ Notable, in that they’ve sold about half as many units this year as they did the year previous.
Continuing, Iwata noted â€œOn the other hand, Sony’s PS3 showed a good transition and they increased the unit sales by about 50%…Although we held more than a 60% hardware market share through last year – Wii has 42% and PS3 40% share thus far this year – so both machines are neck and neck in Japan."
Things are slightly different in the US though. Microsoft’s Xbox 360 is still the reigning champion, and the only console in that region that’s yet to see a marked sales decline. Iwata reckons that American momentum will grow following the recent price cut, but I’m not entirely sure. It’s starting to look like everybody who wanted a Wii pretty much already has one – and without all that much in the way of desirable software bound for the system it’s hardly an enticing prospect.
Of course, we’ll have to see if New Super Mario Bros really does have the pull that Pachter expects it to.
Conversely, the PS3 is picking up steam stateside; and with its lower price and bevy of blockbuster exclusives it’s not hard to see why.
Source : Spong
Last Updated: November 3, 2009