The Nintendo Switch’s sales dominance has been quite the spectacle to watch, and it’s still putting on a serious show. The NPD, the organization responsible for tracking sales data for the video game market across the USA, has released its latest report from January 2021. As has been the trend for quite some time now, the Nintendo Switch has taken the top spot for units sold throughout the month.
But, there’s even more to that little fact.
Not only did the Switch sell the most number of units in January, but it also smashed a sales record: this was the most a platform has sold during the month of January since the Nintendo Wii all the way back in January 2010. This was revealed by Mat Piscatella, the executive director and video game industry advisor for the NPD Group.
This milestone is notable considering the wild year that the video game industry experienced during 2020. In addition to seeing the release of two-erm-three next-gen systems towards the end of the year, there’s also the consideration of the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Nintendo Switch was in high demand since March due to the pandemic, and that spike in interest was not at all temporary; it lasted throughout 2020 and has clearly spilled over now into the beginning of this year.
US NPD HW – Sales of video game hardware were 144% higher than January 2020, reaching $319 million. This is the highest total for a January month since the $323 million achieved in January 2011.
— Mat Piscatella (@MatPiscatella) February 12, 2021
January tends to be one of the slowest months of the year in the video game industry due to so many blockbuster titles preferring to launch in the latter half of every year, usually between September-November. Releases will then tend to pick up around the spring. But, even without any major releases in January, the Switch managed to hold onto the sales surge that it’s been riding high on for several months.
Nintendo also released its latest financial report last month, with data going up until the end of December 2020. By that point, it was revealed that the Switch was just a stone’s throw away from selling over 80 million units worldwide; again, this is without the sales data from January 2021.
This means that, even going just by US sales, the Switch is no doubt well beyond the 80 million mark as of right now. Japan was also going Switch-crazy throughout the month of January, pulling in triple-digit numbers; this even further propels the system far past 80 million units at this point. It wouldn’t be surprising if Nintendo’s next report in a few months puts the console at potentially 85+ million units sold worldwide.
That would mean that the Switch would enter its fifth year of life (which tends to be the commencement of a console’s twilight years) still selling well and also ever closer to the coveted milestone of 100 million units sold; a goal which even Nintendo believes is attainable, and is working hard to see to it that it’s actually achieved.