Nintendo tops 400K units in first week of sales
Michelle Clancy | 27-11-2012
Nintendo's new "living room hub," the Wii U, has been performing well in its first week on sale in the United States, with the company stating over 400,000 have been sold — boding well for the TVii service that it's embedding with it.
The Wii U launched on 18 November with a retail price of $300. Despite fears that much of the beyond-gaming content would be missing at launch — video chat, streaming video, second-screen sports stats integration and so on — the gadget was quickly fitted with a mandatory update fixing much of the issue even as Hulu Plus, Netflix and Amazon all launched dedicated apps for it.
Nintendo is hoping to take a page from the Xbox 360 in order to become a critical "Input 1" within the living room. To that end, it also offers an interactive TV guide to find programming across every available content provider, and connectivity to a range of Web apps, including social media, IMDb and Wikipedia, directly from the TVii app. In addition it has a timeline feature that shows what's been going on in a show so far, and any social commentary appears live through the timeline.
Meanwhile, the sports module offers stat syncing so that fans can watch the game, and see all the latest scores from the last week, Twitter reactions, questions about the current game and illustrations of the latest plays.
The 400,000-unit success is great for the company but is not without precedent. When Nintendo launched the original Wii six years ago, with what was at the time ground-breaking motion-sensing technology, it sold 475,000 in the first seven days.
The company is still selling the original Wii model, and moved 300,000 of them in the past week in the US as holiday shopping ramped up. It also sold 250,000 handheld Nintendo 3DS and 275,000 of the Nintendo DS.
The Wii U will next launch in Europe and Japan.