April 26th, 2008, 21:47 Posted By: wraggster
Following Nintendo's latest fiscal results, Lazard Capital Markets analyst Colin Sebastian noted that Nintendo may consider a "refresh" to its DS handheld if sales continue to slow down.
"Nintendo expects to ship 28M DS handheld units in F2009, a decline from 30M units shipped in F2008. The forecasted year-over-year decline in DS hardware shipments in its fourth year on the market is in line with our expectations. We expect DS unit sales in the U.S. of 6.4M in 2008, and continue to believe our forecast may be conservative. According to its press release, Nintendo plans to accelerate DS sales momentum with further penetration into the consumer mass market and by introducing new software and services for the platform. Moreover, we believe Nintendo could launch a refresh of its handheld platform if sales momentum does not continue," Sebastian said.
He also noted that Nintendo's new projection of 25 million Wiis shipped in the new fiscal year implies a monthly production boost to 2.1 million units, which is consistent with what he recently told GameDaily BIZ regarding Nintendo's production plans.
Additionally, despite the first-party dominance on the Wii, publishers continue to flock to the console, Sebastian said: "While software sales on Nintendo Wii continue to be driven to some extent by first-party titles such as Wii Play, Super Smash Bros. Brawl and Super Mario Galaxy, we note that many third-party software publishers continue to increase development pipelines for Wii titles. This is consistent with our analysis of title economics that suggests that publishers should be able to tolerate lower retail pricing and attach rates on the Wii to a certain extent without sacrificing title profitability."
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