Video games: Nintendo will announce the successor to the Switch next year

Video games: Nintendo will announce the successor to the Switch next year
Video games: Nintendo will announce the successor to the Switch next year

The Japanese giant Nintendo announced on Tuesday that information on the highly anticipated successor to its Switch console, more than seven years old, will be communicated by the end of March 2025, while delivering new extremely cautious financial forecasts.

“We will make an announcement regarding the successor to the Nintendo Switch during this fiscal year”, which ends on March 31, 2025, wrote on X its president Shuntaro Furukawa. However, he tempered expectations by adding that communication on upcoming Nintendo games in June would make “no mention” of the new console. The ball of rumors – never confirmed by Nintendo – which have been building pressure around the Switch’s successor for several years now, gave way to the disappointment of investors in mid-February when several media outlets claimed that the launch, hoped for this year, could be postponed to 2025.

Conservative financial forecasts
Nintendo shares, which have been soaring since the beginning of January in the face of expectations for a “Switch 2” this year, have fallen 13% since the publication of this press information. And the annual objectives announced Tuesday by the group based in Kyoto (western Japan) confirm in detail that the future console will have only a small impact on its results in 2024/25: Nintendo thus only forecasts a net profit of 300 billion yen (1.81 billion euros), which would be a drop of almost 40% over one year.

It also expects a 20% decline in its turnover over this period. Defying all predictions of a difficult end of life, the current Switch console, released in March 2017, has now sold more than 141 million units, Nintendo announced on Tuesday. It is the third best-selling console in the history of video games behind Sony’s PlayStation 2 and the Nintendo DS.

And according to analyst Serkan Toto of the Kantan Games firm, the Switch “can overtake” its two competitors to take the first step of the podium, “especially if Nintendo continues to sell it for a certain time after the release” of the news, he estimated on X. Nintendo sold 15.7 million copies of the Switch last financial year, in line with its objective, and plans to sell an additional 13.5 million in 2024/25.

Mystery…
Sales of this console reached their peak in 2020, when a large number of countries implemented lockdowns in the face of the Covid-19 pandemic, encouraging many consumers to equip themselves with video games to get through this period. But revenues have since been on a declining slope, even if the release of several big, highly anticipated games like “The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom”, and the effects of the box office success of the film “Mario”, have contributed in 2023/24 to cushion the inevitable fall in sales.

Helped by the resistance of its aging machine, and by the fall of the yen which is boosting its sales abroad, Nintendo announced on Tuesday a record net profit for the financial year ended at the end of March (490.6 billion yen, or 2. 9 billion euros, up 13.4% year-on-year), and sales up 4.4%. Much less predictable than its competitors Sony and Microsoft for its new consoles, Nintendo generally offers with each new release an innovation beyond raw power, and this time again the secret is well kept.

Many analysts believe, however, that moving away from the hybrid model of the Switch, which allows the console to be used portablely or connected to a television, would be a considerable risk for the Japanese group. Accustomed to “roller coasters”, Nintendo had in the past followed the triumph of the Wii console released in 2006 (101.63 million copies sold) with the resounding oven of the Wii U six years later (only 13.56 million units sold).

Sami Nemli With Agency / ECO Inspirations

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