) latest console is off to a rocky start, selling only
3.19 million units
since it was released last November.
The New York Times
, Nintendo expects that it will have sold no more than four
million units through March -- nearly 30 percent less than the
company's previous projection of 5.5 million. In the grand scheme
of game console sales, four million units is not a bad number to
achieve in just over four months. This is no ordinary console,
however. Wii U is the follow-up to the critically acclaimed Wii
console, a machine that has sold
98.8 million units
in six years.
Wii inspired millions of consumers to line up for hours. The
in November 2006 and did not end until 2008, when the number of
units had finally caught up to the demand.
The same was not true for Wii U. While the first round of
shipments immediately sold out, the console became readily
available at most Best Buy (NYSE:
) stores before Christmas. It was a new world for Nintendo -- one
where consumers did not eagerly scramble to buy what the company
Some have blamed the low sales on the lack of quality games.
Others believe that consumers would rather play simple or
mindless apps on their smartphones instead of spending $50 to $60
for a high-quality game.
Whatever the cause, Activision (NASDAQ:
) CEO Bobby Kotick may not care. He just simply wants Nintendo to
turn things around.
"As you know, we were somewhat disappointed with the launch of
the Wii U, and I think it's a challenging environment this year,"
Kotick told investors during a conference call. "One of the
things we are concerned about is what the installed base of
hardware will be like for 6- to-11-year-olds. But we have a lot
of confidence in the franchise for the long-term."
In addition to expressing disappointment, Kotick referred to
Wii U's "slower-than-expected adoption" as posing a challenge to
Skylanders, the company's most popular game developed
specifically for young children.
Disney Infinity (NYSE:
), a Skylanders clone featuring several worlds and characters
from various Disney and Pixar franchises, could present a more
significant threat when it is released later this year.
(c) 2013 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment
advice. All rights reserved.
Gain access to more investing ideas, tools & education.
Get Started on Marketfy, the first ever curated
& verified Marketplace for everything trading.