Since the launch of the Nintendo Switch in March 2017, Nintendo has tracked over 55 million units sold, making it the third highest-selling Nintendo home console of all time. The Switch sold 21 million units over the last fiscal year.
Those 55 million units include the Switch and the handheld-only Switch Lite, which released in September 2019.
The third place milestone surpasses the Super Nintendo Entertainment System (Super Famicom in Japan), which sold 49 million units from 1990 – 2003, when it was finally discontinued in Japan.
Currently in second place is the original Nintendo Entertainment System (Famicom in Japan), which sits at 61 million units sold. It’s credited with single-handily reviving the entire gaming industry in the 1980s.
Having sold over 50 million units in only three years, the Switch has been a smashing success for Nintendo. We have no doubt it will soon take second place.
First place, however, is the often maligned Nintendo Wii, which sold a staggering 101 million units in about seven years. The Wii broke several sales records, mostly due to the motion control-fad, and the fact that it was sold more as a toy than a gaming console.
It’s important to note that none of these home console sales lists include Nintendo’s handheld consoles, such as the Game Boy, Nintendo DS, and Nintendo 3DS, which tend to outsell all the home consoles by a wide margin. The 3DS, for example, released in 2011 and has sold over 77 million units. It has yet to be discontinued, though the Switch’s handheld functionality has all but replaced it.