Nintendo's Satoru Iwata Feels Great About The Nintendo DS In 2009


Posted January 9, 2009 - By Raymond Padilla

Nintendo president Satoru Iwata feels that the wildly popular Nintendo DS still has room to grow, despite closing in on a global installed base of nearly 100-million users. In a recent interview with the Daily Yomiuri, Iwata said:

"Some say the market for the DS is saturated, but I disagree. In Japan, a country with a population of 127 million, we've sold 23 million DS units. The United States is inhabited by over 300 million people, and there are more than 490 million people in the European Union. Sales of the product could grow further in foreign countries considering their populations. The number of people playing games is rapidly increasing in Europe, where the penetration of games had been slow. In Germany, bookstores have opened Nintendo sections and Wii software has sold well. I'd also like to focus on emerging markets such as Russia and India."

The success of the DS has been pretty ridiculous and it doesn't appear to be slowing down. In Japan, the Nintendo DSi has been the recent hotness, but the regular DS continues to enjoy brisk sales in the rest of the world. It will be interesting to see how Nintendo does in Russia and India, considering the rampant piracy that occurs in those countries.

Despite the dour economic conditions, Iwata remains upbeat -- though cautious -- about Nintendo's immediate future, as well as the future of the gaming business in general. He said:

"I think the game industry will keep doing well in 2009. However, the current economic recession is something that happens only once in 50 or 100 years. We have to monitor the market very carefully."

Gaming is doing surprisingly well and there doesn't appear to be anything that can stop Nintendo at the moment, but I'm not convinced that there won't be some kind of downturn in 2009. I'd love to be wrong, but financial conditions keep getting worse and so much of what I've read says that things will continue to decline in 2009. Should those reports be accurate, gaming will surely feel an impact to some degree.

Anyway, do you agree with Iwata? Will the Nintendo DS continue pull crazy numbers in 2009? Will the business keep doing well this year? Let me know what you think!


Nintendo's Satoru Iwata Feels Great About The Nintendo DS In 2009


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