NINTENDO DS LEADS VIDEO GAME INDUSTRY GROWTH
REDMOND , Wash., Oct. 13, 2006 â As both an entertainment and a business, Nintendo DSâ¢ today is the powerhouse of the U.S. video game industry, driving nearly all industry revenue growth so far this year. Without this portable system, the video game industry growth overall would be nearly flat when compared with 2005, according to independent sales figures from the NPD Group of Port Washington, N.Y.
Through September's end, the U.S. industry overall shows revenue growth of 11 percent when compared with the same period in 2005. Nearly all of the growth comes from the portable DS â without it, the industry would report a mere 1.6 percent growth over the past nine months. DS hardware and software units posted a robust gain of 203 percent when compared to the same period in 2005. The news is the same globally: Nintendo recently announced estimated full-year shipments for DS hardware will grow to 20 million units from 17 million units worldwide, while estimated DS software shipments increased to 82 million units from 75 million.
"Numbers dramatically show the value of reaching out to the masses with products that are compelling and comfortable," says Nintendo of America President Reggie Fils-Aime. "And this perfectly sets the stage for our breakthrough Wii console, which appeals to both core players and current non-players with an intuitive control system and a price everyone can afford."
The NPD numbers also indicate that during September, Nintendo DS lifetime U.S. sales surpassed more than 6.2 million units. That total includes more than 1.4 million units of the new Nintendo DS Lite systems, which launched just 16 weeks ago on June 11. It's important to note these numbers represent Nintendo DS systems actually purchased by customers, not ones shipped only to stores.
"During a home console generation upgrade, consumer interest in existing consoles tends to drop as anticipation for new consoles increases. Hand-held game hardware and software revenues have kept the industry afloat," says Billy Pidgeon, Program Manager, Consumer Markets: Gaming at IDC. "Hand-held gaming has spurred real industry growth, and Nintendo's longstanding leadership in this space continues to drive this market."
This summer, Nintendo launched its Touch Generations brand to help newcomers to video games identify which nontraditional and pick-up-and-play titles are appropriate for them. The response from consumers has been enthusiastic, as four of the top 10 best-selling Nintendo DS games are Touch Generations titles. Touch Generations games include Brain Ageâ¢: Train Your Brain in Minutes a Day and the three versions of Nintendogs â¢. And at the same time, avid players also are fueling growth: the New Super Mario Bros. Â® title, exclusively for Nintendo DS, is the third best-seller among all video games this year, including console games.
Nintendo's internal statistics show the Touch Generations brand continues to reach more women and older gamers. Nintendo statistics show a significant percentage of all Touch Generations software buyers are female and are age 25 or older, demonstrating the broad appeal of Nintendo titles like Brain Age and Big Brain Academyâ¢, which provide engaging and entertaining content for baby boomers and seniors alike.
The worldwide innovator in the creation of interactive entertainment, Nintendo Co., Ltd., of Kyoto, Japan, manufactures and markets hardware and software for its Nintendo DS â¢, Game BoyÂ® Advance and Nintendo GameCubeâ¢ systems, and upcoming Wiiâ¢ console. Since 1983, Nintendo has sold nearly 2.2 billion video games and more than 375 million hardware units globally, and has created industry icons like Mario â¢, Donkey KongÂ®, MetroidÂ®, Zeldaâ¢ and PokÃ©monÂ®. A wholly owned subsidiary, Nintendo of America Inc., based in Redmond, Wash., serves as headquarters for Nintendo's operations in the Western Hemisphere.
For more information about Nintendo, visit the company's Web site at www.nintendo.com.