Nintendo has a history of refining its hardware offerings, and leading games analyst Michael Pachter has,
, predicted that the platform holder's world-conquering DS could see its third incarnation hit retail before the year is out.
"We think that the timing of a new product introduction will depend upon the sales profile for the DS, and believe that lower than expected DS hardware sales could trigger an earlier launch for the new device.
"DS sales are solid worldwide, but are weak in Japan, leading us to expect an introduction of a new device in Japan before the end of the calendar year."
Elsewhere in Pachter's notes, he heaps praise on the firm for what he calls its flawless” execution of its next-gen roadmap: "We expect to see a large portion of the increase in Wii monthly production shipped to the US market, and believe that Nintendo is well-positioned for dramatic software sales in that territory over the balance of the year.
"Similarly, we think that the lion's share of the expected 28 million DS hardware units shipped during the fiscal year will land in the US and Europe, and we expect to see strong software sales in those territories."