Nintendo Fiscal Year: Switch Falls Short, Digital Sales Rise to $1 Billion

Posted by | April 29, 2019 | News, Switch | No Comments
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Nintendo’s 2018 fiscal year ended on March 31, 2019. The company recently revealed its sales numbers for hardware and software sales throughout the year. Despite surging popularity and praise, their flagship console, the Switch, fell a bit short of their sales goals. Digital software sales, on the other hand, surged ahead to record-breaking numbers.

Read the full Nintendo 2018 financial statement.

For the fiscal year of 2018 (March 31, 2018 to March 31, 2019) the Switch sold 16.95 million units. That’s short of Nintendo’s original bullish forecast of 20 million units sold, and still short of the revised goal of 17 million units. That puts total lifetime sales of the Nintendo Switch at 34.74 million units, surpassing the Nintendo 64 and approaching the estimated units sold for the Xbox One (Microsoft no longer publishes hardware sales numbers).

In other Nintendo hardware news, the Nintendo 3DS continues its sharp but expected decline. Sales fell to just 2.55 million units, a 60% decrease over last year for the eight year old handheld. Software sales for the 3DS also fell 63% as Nintendo has all but softly phased out the handheld in favor of its console-handheld hybrid.

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Digital sales through the Nintendo eShop on the Switch saw a huge amount of growth, however. Digital sales revenue rose by a whopping 95% compared to last year, resulting in the Japanese company reaching just over $1 billion in digital sales for the first time in company history.

Top software sales for the 2018 fiscal year were Super Smash Bros. Ultimate (13.81 million units sold) and Pokémon Let’s Go, Pikachu! and Let’s Go, Eevee! (10.63 million units sold).

Finally, here’s Nintendo’s forecast for the 2019 fiscal year:

Nintendo Switch has continued to spread quickly around the world since launch, providing a foundation for further business growth. In order to maintain this momentum, we will release Nintendo Labo Toy-Con 04: VR Kit in April, Super Mario Maker 2 in June, and Fire Emblem: Three Houses in July, all worldwide. In addition, Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield, Animal Crossing (temp.) and The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening are slated for release in 2019. Furthermore, major titles from other software publishers are scheduled to be released. We aim to contribute to momentum of the platform by continuously introducing attractive new titles in addition to popular titles already released.

Nintendo continues to enjoy hefty operating profits with the Switch’s success in both hardware and software. Nintendo has forecasted another 18 million units sold for the Switch in 2019.

Eric Watson

About Eric Watson

Eric is a freelance writer who enjoys talking about video games, movies, books and Dallas-based sports teams. Every week he watches a random film from his collection of several hundred DVDs and live tweets about it @RogueWatson. He also makes a mean tuna quesadilla. He lives near Fort Worth, Texas with his wife and daughter, two dogs, two cats, two fish tanks, some hermit crabs and a bookshelf full of Transformers.