There is no doubt that Nintendo has seen incredible success with the Switch. Creating a console that can be both an in-home and portable console in one brought to reality a promise made by both Microsoft and Sony, but accomplishing it first. The success of the device has created a lot of questions about the fate of Nintendo's other portable console, however: the 3DS family.
Those questions have been put to rest this week, as Nintendo announced on a financial briefing that the Nintendo 3DS family is still going strong. In fact, the company sold one million new 3DS devices in this past six month sales period, which represents 8 years of the product category being on the market. To put that into perspective, the incredibly successful Switch sold a little over five million units in the same period. Comparatively, the original DS handhelds sold 2.35 million units at the same point in their lives, and they didn't have another product to compete with.
According to the company,
Nintendo 3DS is set apart from Nintendo Switch by its characteristics as a handheld game system that is lightweight, price-friendly, and highly portable. Affordability is the strong point that positions Nintendo 3DS in a niche clearly separate from Nintendo Switch. In the grand scheme of things, Nintendo 3DS has a prominent position as the product that can be served as the first contact between Nintendo and many of its consumers, and for this reason we will keep the business going.
This means that Nintendo is still committed to bringing value to the 3DS family. It's a reasonable commitment, being as the devices are still selling so well, and they are a great value. The 2DS currently sells for $149 - half the price of the Switch. Plus, there are whole franchises that are available on the 3DS that are not yet on the Switch. For example, Pokemon does not have a presence on the Switch, though it will be remedied in a few weeks.
Obviously, the 3DS will not live forever, but it's good to see that it is still going strong 8 years later, with support from Nintendo.