Nintendo Denies Report That Wii U Production Will Halt This Year
But ... but my conspiracy theories!
Nintendo’s Wii U hasn’t been selling well since its launch in 2012. It’s only managed to sell just over 12.6 million units, losing out to both the Nintendo 64 and the GameCube—the systems whose relative lack of success led to changing things up with the Wii in the first place (though they also had longer lifespans). Now, there’s a report that Nintendo is halting Wii U production as early as this year, but the company is denying it.
The report itself comes from the Japanese newspaper Nikkei, which itself has a solid record with Nintendo rumors, so take that as you will. They claim that not only will Nintendo stop producing the Wii U in 2016, but that companies that make some of the console’s parts have already stopped manufacturing them. That would be an early end to the Wii U’s life after only about four years, but the move would make sense with the reveal of Nintendo’s new hardware, NX, slated for E3 in June, with possible teases even sooner.
On the other hand, Nintendo claims that this is entirely false. A spokesperson for the company told IT Media (translation from Kotaku), “This isn’t an announcement from our company. From the next quarter and thereafter as well, production [of the Wii U] is scheduled to continue.” However, whether Nikkei is right or not, Nintendo would have to insist that production isn’t stopping. If they admit to it or let this rumor fester further, assumptions would become even more widespread that they’re releasing the NX this holiday season, which would kill any lingering chance of continued Wii U sales.
Again, this certainly would be an unusually short lifespan for a modern game console, but the Wii U is also the worst selling modern home console from the Nintendo/Sony/Microsoft hardware triumvirate, and it shows no signs of picking up significantly. Even if the NX doesn’t make it onto store shelves in time for the holidays as the rumors have it, Nintendo probably wishes it would. Despite having some quality software, winding down Wii U production only makes sense from a business standpoint.
(via Philip Lopez on Twitter, image via Nintendo)
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