Nintendo Reports First Annual Loss Ever, Thanks to the iPhone

Nintendo Reports First Annual Loss Ever, Thanks to the iPhone

As expected, Nintendo has officially announced (via The Verge) a major annual operating loss of 37.3 billion yen ($459.54 million) from 2011 to 2012 – the first annual loss in the company’s history. The loss is mainly due to poor sales performance of the Nintendo 3DS, and their aging Wii console.

Of course, much of this can be directly attributed to the iPhone and iPad. Nintendo President Satoru Iwata has acknowledged on multiple occasions that  smartphones and tablets are taking up more of consumers’ leisure time, posing an increasing challenge to Nintendo.

Indeed, the iPhone and iPad (and even many Android devices) and are now extremely capable gaming devices – at least as powerful as most game consoles. Games on mobile devices are also much cheaper than studio-produced console games. Despite all of this, however, Iwata is adamant that Nintendo will not begin producing apps for the App Store or Android Market as long as he’s at the head of the company, revealing “over my dead body” stubornness against the idea.

We’ve discussed how the iPhone and iPad are threatening console gaming on multiple occasions for these reasons and more on multiple occasions. Still, it’s sad to see a gaming titan like Nintendo suffer from what amounts to corporate stubbornness.

Even if Nintendo began by releasing their older games (such as Super Mario World) on the App Store for $15-20 each, customers would freak out and flock to the App Store to get them on their iOS and Android devices.

This is Nintendo’s first loss in 30 years. And unless Nintendo sells more of their upcoming Wii U than you can shake a stick at, you can bet it won’t be their last.  Sad.

  1. Unfortunatelly, the Wii U hasn’t even been released and it’s already DOA (Dead on Arrival). The iPad and the Apple TV offer the exact same dual screen gaming experience with a bigger and cheaper game selection. 

    Nintendo’s niche market it’s note precisely the most loyal and their clearly switching to iOS and Android for gaming. 

    In addition, the fact that the Wii U offers HD Graphics it’s no longer revolutionary, if anything it’s playing catch up with something that Microsoft and Sony unveiled years ago and are already working on Next Gen consoles. As always, nintendo is competing with previous gen consoles and the market has changed since the release of the Wii. 

    Am I the only one that thinks like this?

  2. JimGresham says:

    I loved Nintendo, but if they don’t get over themselves, they will find they are obsolete.  I would easily pay $5 for an iPhone app or $15-$20 for a Universal app for iPhone and iPad.  

    Heck, I’d pay $30 for a Mac App Store version of Super Mario.

  3. lucas823 says:

    It’s a sad day, but nintendo needs to step it up.  The problem with the 3DS is that nobody really felt like they NEEDED to have it.  First of all, I think now is the time for nintendo to drop the DS franchise.  The dual screen with the stylus is old school now.  They need to get a sleek, completely new redesign.  They need to up the screen resolution, add multitouch, and possibly even be the first big company to incorporate senseg technology, which would allow the users to “feel” textures on their touchscreen.  Imagine the image popping out in 3D, and being able to feel it at the same time! 

    The unveiling of the wii u was disappointing at best.  It felt like a hodgepodge of unnecessary technologies.  Nintendo should have leapfrogged current consoles in the graphics and power departments, and won over the hardcore gaming crowd with some new, hardcore, nintendo exclusive franchised developed outside of nintendo.  Perhaps strike up a contract with EA to get a kickass new game on the wii u.  Then they should’ve developed some sort of new technology that would win over the casual gamers.  Lastly, they need to come up with a better marketing strategy.  I haven’t heard any wii u news since it was unveiled.  When EA unveiled BF3, they kept that son of a bitch in the news until release day.  When apple unveils a new product, you can be damned sure that the interwebs will be abuzz for months anticipating it.  Nintendo needs to do the same thing.

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