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3DS is bouncing back, but it may never reach the DS' potential - Analyst
3DS is bouncing back, but it may never reach the DS' potential - Analyst
January 4, 2012 | By Tom Curtis

Now that the 3DS has been through its first holiday season, Wedbush Securities analyst Michael Pachter says he is much more optimistic about the future of Nintendo's latest handheld, even though it may never catch up to its successful predecessor.

In a recent interview with Eurogamer, Pachter said that while the 3DS saw a rough launch, the platform's significant price drop and growing portfolio have dramatically improved its performance.

"Now that we are seeing more first party titles at a lower price point, sales have increased. It's definitely turned the corner," he said.

While the platform's sales are looking strong, Pachter says the growing smartphone market will make it difficult for the 3DS to ever compare to the original DS, which was incredibly popular with casual consumers.

"The emergence of smartphone games is eroding the casual market's support for dedicated gaming devices, and I'd guess that 30 percent or more of DS sales were to casual gamers. That makes it tough to compete," he said.

"At the high end, we have renewed competition from Sony with PS Vita, so they should nibble away at the hardcore, leaving Nintendo an addressable market for 3DS that is around 60 percent as big as the addressable market for DS."

Just yesterday, Nintendo announced that the 3DS has sold 4 million units in the US, and in December the platform hit the 4.1 million unit mark in Japan. To date, the original DS boasts more than 150 units sold worldwide.

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Jeremy Reaban
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Considering the DS is the most successful gaming platform ever (well, other than perhaps the PC), I think that's a pretty safe statement.

But as I said back when people were writing off the 3DS as dead, it hasn't even seen a Pokemon yet...

Joe McGinn
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I was worried about the 3DS, but if Pachter is worried it must be OK. Golden rule of the game industry: a;ways bet against Pachter. You'll never lose.

jayvee inamac
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this sounds like a deja vu.

Eric Geer
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"In an interview with Time magazine, Reggie Fils-Aime, Nintendo of America president confirmed that, 'In sales through this past 8 months it has outsold the full 12 months of the original DS. During that 12 month's time, the original DS sold 2.37 million and we just surpassed that this past Saturday.'"

Read more:

^I think this says more about the 3DS than Pachter ever could---If games continue to come out in their recent form of quality. I would expect the 3DS to out sell the DS over the next 6 years.

Harry Fields
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Pachter is an anagram for TheCrap. That is all.

Jonathan Jou
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This is Pachter, telling us the PS Vita is going to beat the 3DS:

This is Pachter, telling us the 3DS is going to beat the PS Vita:

So... he was right, he was wrong about being wrong, and now he's wrong about being wrong about being wrong?

Tom Baird
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The last line states the DS sold more than 150 units worldwide. I should certainly hope so.