Most of us know that sales of the Nintendo DS have gone crazy in 2006, but Nintendo has produced interesting numbers that claim it's not just Brain Training Nintendogs loving Mario fans who are benefitting from the touchscreen marvel.
The Japanese company claims that the DS is the powerhouse of the U.S. video game industry, driving nearly all industry revenue growth so far this year. Without this portable system, the video game industry growth overall would be nearly flat when compared with 2005.
It cites independent sales figures from the NPD Group of Port Washington, N.Y., to back up its claim.
Up until the end of September, the U.S. industry overall shows revenue growth of 11 per cent when compared with the same period in 2005. Nearly all of the growth comes from the portable DS – without it, the industry would report a mere 1.6 per cent growth over the past nine months, it says.
DS hardware and software units posted a robust gain of 203 per cent when compared to the same period in 2005. Nintendo says the news is the same globally: it recently announced estimated full-year shipments for DS hardware will grow to 20 million units from 17 million units worldwide, while estimated DS software shipments increased to 82 million units from 75 million.
And never backwards about coming forwards, "Numbers dramatically show the value of reaching out to the masses with products that are compelling and comfortable," said Nintendo of America President Reggie Fils-Aime.
The NPD numbers also indicate that during September, Nintendo DS lifetime U.S. sales surpassed more than 6.2 million units. That total includes more than 1.4 million units of the new Nintendo DS Lite systems, which launched just 16 weeks ago on June 11.
Nintendo stressed that these numbers represent Nintendo DS systems actually purchased by customers, not ones shipped only to stores.
All this, and most of the 30 hottest Nintendo DS games due by Christmas are still to be released...