Calls for the 3DS to be offed have been loud pretty much since the Switch was first revealed. These calls only grew louder as the system was eventually released and became established. Some fans see the 3DS as being a distraction for Nintendo. But, the Big N itself doesn’t view it at that way—hence the reason why the aging system continues to truck on.
In a recent interview with Kyoto News, Nintendo President Shuntaro Furukawa confirmed that the little handheld will be sticking around for the time being. Compared to the Switch, Furukawa sees the 3DS as an affordable, entry-level option for new gamers. For this reason, he considers both businesses to be separate from each other. This is why Nintendo has been willing to keep the 3DS going on.
Truth be told, Switch sales overall have been doing remarkably well despite the 3DS continuously dropping in price. So, Nintendo doesn’t really have any reason to ditch the handheld completely until it starts losing the company money. It will be interesting to see if the 3DS can make it to 2020, but the original DS stuck it out for nearly a decade, so it’s not like such a thing hasn’t happened before.