Unit sales of handheld and home video game consoles in Japan as of May 2020

The Nintendo Switch had sold approximately 11.35 million units in Japan as of May 2020. Launched in March 2017, it overtook Sony's PlayStation 4 in May 2019 in terms of cumulative unit sales. While the Nintendo Switch can be seen as a hybrid console that bridges the gap between stationary home consoles and handheld devices, its follow-up version, the Switch Lite, can only be used as a handheld device.

The Japanese console gaming market

The Japanese video game market is the third biggest gaming market in the world. While the smartphone has become the most popular gaming device in Japan today and continues to drive the economic growth of the gaming industry as a whole, the combined market of handheld and home consoles remains a large industry worth several hundred billion Japanese yen. Taken together, the most successful titles sell several million copies in the course of a single year. In 2017, the successful launch of the Nintendo Switch brought about the first growth of sales revenue for the gaming console industry after a longer period of declining revenue figures.

Leading companies

While the competition on the hardware market is more evenly distributed in other countries, Sony and Nintendo clearly outpace Microsoft on their home market. Next to two of the three major hardware companies Japan is also home to some of the world’s leading gaming software developers, such as Bandai Namco, Square Enix, Konami, Capcom, and Sega. Their products, which include game franchises like Final Fantasy or Street Fighter, are not only well-received in Japan, but also have a broad audience internationally.

Cumulative unit sales of handheld and home video game consoles in Japan as of May 2020

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Release date

May 2020



Survey time period

April 27 to May 10, 2020

Supplementary notes

*The source contained a typing mistake for updated figures in May 2020.

The PlayStation Vita was covered by the source until the beginning of January 2020. By January 8, 2020, it had sold approximately 5.86 million units.

Figures are estimates.
Values have been rounded.

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Statistics on "Console gaming in Japan"

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