With the current installment of the Mario Kart series becoming the best-selling entry in its history and Nintendo accumulating a net profit of $1.5 billion, things are looking up for the Japanese video game company. This is supplemented by the fact that its current-gen console, the Nintendo Switch, is by far the most-sold video game console of this generation with 93 million units shifted since its launch in 2017. As our chart indicates, its competitors have a lot of catching up to do.
The combined sales of Microsoft's current models Xbox Series X and Series S, for example, only amount to roughly eight million one week before their one-year launch anniversary on November 10. Its rival Sony fared considerably better, with Playstation 5 sales amounting to 13.4 million units in its first year since launch. Even when viewed from the angle of average consoles sold each year, the Nintendo Switch wins out in every region. Its popularity is especially striking in its home market of Japan, where Microsoft in particular has had a hard time gaining a foothold in the past. While 100,000 sold units might seem a low number for twelve months, the U.S. tech giant has considerably improved compared to the previous console generation: Selling 100,000 Xbox One consoles took the company more than four years in the East Asian island nation.
The launch of both the Xbox Series and Playstation 5 models was marred by the continuing impact of the coronavirus pandemic on supply chains, labor workforce and chip shortages, causing widespread dissatisfaction among customers and empty warehouses for retailers. Even now, buying the current-gen consoles by Microsoft and Sony can be a gamble, while the updated Nintendo Switch model with a bigger OLED screen and a new docking station is widely available everywhere after a period of shortages surrounding its release on October 8.