The Nintendo Switch has been immensely popular since its launch, but just how popular was not known, as the company gave no official global sales numbers. However, we now have an unofficial sales number suggesting that the Japanese company shipped 2.4 million consoles globally during the debut month.
An impressive start for the Nintendo Switch
This number comes from independent market research firm SuperData, which has now raised its full-year 2017 sales estimate for the console to 7.2 million units, compared to the estimate of 5 million units earlier, according to GameSpot.
“Nintendo is performing above expectations, which suggests that, at least for now, it is well on its way to restore investor confidence,” said SuperData CEO Joost van Dreunen in a statement.
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Further, the executive noted that several big releases for the Nintendo Switch are lined up, which will accelerate sales even more going forward. Some of the big releases are Mario Kart 8 Deluxe (later this month) and Splatoon 2 (July 12).
Though the Japanese company has given no official sales number so far, it did confirm that the portable console is its fastest-selling console ever. Hopefully, the real sales number will be known later this month when the company releases its next earnings report on April 27.
How it’s performing in the U.S.
Recently, Nintendo revealed that first-month U.S. sales for the console were 906,000 units. The console was launched on March 3, so it means that in 28 days, approximately 33,000 consoles were sold each day, on average, notes BI. Microsoft sold over 2 million Xbox One units in its first 18 days of availability, while Sony shipped 2.1 million PS4 units in its first 14 days, notes CNBC.
“That makes Nintendo Switch one of the fastest-selling video game systems of all time. Notably, this sales surge was accomplished in a nontraditional month for a console launch,” the company said in a press release.
The Nintendo Switch has been selling out quickly at retailers since its release in early March. The only option to get your hands on the console right now is to order one on Amazon at a premium. The supply shortage is expected to continue.
The company acknowledged the popularity and problems with keeping the Switch in stock and said that new units are “continually being shipped.”
The Legend of Zelda – a big reason for the Switch’s success
Many analysts believe that the console’s success could be directly related to Nintendo’s classic video game franchise The Legend of Zelda. Sales of the game even outstripped the console itself, topping 925,000. This was mainly because some players bought both a limited edition version of the game and the regular version, the Japanese company said. Analysts believe the game is lucrative enough to compel buyers to buy hardware to play it.
Nintendo will continue to pursue this strategy of coming up with blockbuster games. One such game will be the release of Super Mario Odyssey during the holiday shopping season.
Previously, Nintendo did say that it expects to ship about 2 million units in March, so the numbers from SuperData beat the company’s expectations. However, it is still too early to conclude whether the Nintendo Switch can fill the shoes of the original Wii, of which more than 100 million units were sold.