Despite holding a "powerhouse" platform in the 3DS that continues to reach new milestones in the U.S. alone, Nintendo is still weighed down by a stagnant response to the Wii U. Nintendo is preparing to swallow a bitter pill come the end of its current fiscal year as a result, revising its annual forecast downward dramatically from a profit of 55 billion yen ($527 million USD) by the end of this March... to a loss of 25 billion yen ($240 million USD). Annual revenue projections were also reduced from 920 billion yen ($8.8 billion USD) to 590 billion yen ($5.7 billion USD)
Should the reported annual results come March be in line with Nintendo's revised estimates, the company will be facing its third consecutive annual operating loss.
The console giant reduced its year-end Wii U sales forecasts from 9 million to 2.8 million units for hardware, and 19 million units for software (down from 38 million). Even 3DS sales figures were revised downward from 18 million to 13.5 million units for hardware, and 66 million units from 80 million for software.
Where does this leave Nintendo? In search for a way to turn the hardware business around, according to company president Satoru Iwata. Speaking to the press in Osaka today:
“We are thinking about a new business structure. Given the expansion of smart devices, we are naturally studying how smart devices can be used to grow the game-player business.
"We cannot continue a business without winning. We must take a skeptical approach whether we can still simply make game players, offer them in the same way as in the past for 20,000 yen or 30,000 yen, and sell titles for a couple of thousand yen each."
Before it sounds like Nintendo is finally ready to go all third-party on us, Iwata explains that "it’s not as simple as enabling Mario to move on a smartphone." Also, Iwata confirms he is not resigning as a result of the coming loss. So there.