The Nintendo Switch has been blazing up sales charts ever since its debut back in March 2017. A lot of factors surrounding the Switch’s launch made some folks doubtful as to how it would perform:
- The console launched in March, which is far from the typical release time—during the holidays.
- It was coming off the heels of the Wii U, which sold abysmally.
- It was the first real hybrid console, so it was unclear if consumers would be interested or ignore it.
Despite these worries, the Switch clearly trumped them all and has ended up becoming one of Nintendo’s most successful systems so far. To show just how well it’s been doing, Mat Piscatella from the NPD (the company responsible for tracking sales data of the USA game market) broke down the Switch’s sales performance over the last 28 months.
When aligned with other consoles in a similar timeframe, the Switch ranks the fourth-highest of all time (in the USA), trailing behind the Wii, PS2, and PS4. Keep in mind that those systems are some of the best-selling consoles of all time. The Wii and PS2 both surpassed the 100-million unit mark, and the PS4 is well on its way to soon hitting the same milestone. As of the end of March 2019, the Switch sold nearly 35 million units worldwide; that number has likely increased substantially since then.
The Switch has shown no major signs of slowing down with its sales trends. Later this year, a brand-new model will be released: the Switch Lite. Coming in at $200, it will likely generate some serious business due to its low cost, even if it’s an inferior device. Meanwhile, the flagship Switch will continue on with a fresh revision that enhances battery life. Between these two models, Nintendo has a lot going for it. Meanwhile, the PS4 and Xbox One have formally entered their twilight years, and sales will continue to slow down until their successors hit the market.
The next Xbox, Project Scarlett, will come to stores in Holiday 2020. There’s still no word from Sony as to when the next PlayStation system will launch, but it won’t be surprising if that also launches late next year. At that point, Nintendo will have some fiery coals under its feet, but the Switch’s install base will also be quite large. So, developers may still very well be inclined to continue supporting it for a good while longer.