Down-talked handheld matches DS first-year sales in just eight months

Nintendo: 3DS sales are outpacing DS

Nintendo’s next generation handheld, the 3DS, is outperforming its predecessor in terms of current sales growth, an executive at the company has said.

Amid routine claims that the 3DS hasn’t captured the market in the same way as its trailblazing predecessor, Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime said the new handheld is in fact outperforming its forerunner.

“In sales through 8 months, the 3DS has outsold the full 12 months of the original DS,” Fils-Aime (pictured) told Time.

“During that 12 months time, the original DS sold 2.37 million and we just surpassed that this past Saturday, so we’ve got real good momentum going into the holidays.”

The revelation may be seen as Nintendo’s big counterpoint to naysayers who believe the 3DS, and perhaps the handheld market in general, is doomed in an era of smartphones.

But 3DS sales, following an almighty launch campaign, sank fast and were given a new lease of life when Nintendo made a sudden dramatic cut to the system’s price – something which did not happen so soon for the original DS.

Comparing both systems’ sales as a way of defining the performance of the 3DS could be deceiving in light of all the variables that come with major software releases and sales cycles.

The DS – which launched in November 2004 – was one of the best-selling consoles in Nintendo history, but its sales only began to surge about 18 months after its release, when titles such as Brain Training/Age seized the casual games market.

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