Nintendo Sells 400,000 Wii U Consoles in First Week

Nintendo said today that the Wii U sold 400,000 units during its first week on sale in the U.S., despite a bumpy start.

The Japanese game company hit the ground running, with many retailers reporting that the next-generation console was sold out just hours after going on sale on Nov. 18.

In comparison, Nintendo sold more consoles last week than Microsoft was able to sell in an entire month. In October, Microsoft sold 270,000 Xbox units, making it the best-selling console in the U.S. at the time.

Today, Nintendo confirmed in an interview with CNET that sales for all of its hardware have been brisk during the busy holiday week.

Update: In a statement provided by Nintendo of America, it said that in addition to selling 400,000 Wii U units, Nintendo sold 300,000 original Wii consoles, 250,000 3DS portable gaming devices, and 275,000 of the older DS devices. In all, Nintendo sold 1.2 million devices, driven by the new hardware and heavy discounts on older devices.

So far, consumers have been undeterred by reports that the Wii U was missing some key features at launch, and that a mandatory software patch would take more than an hour for customers to download.

Nintendo is selling two variations of its console, ranging from $300 to $350, depending on the features.

Despite a strong start, it’s unclear how the console will perform over the long term. A report released by IHS Screen Digest earlier this month predicted that the Wii U would have a successful launch, but warned that maintaining momentum will be difficult.


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Another gadget you don’t really need. Will not work once you get it home. New model out in 4 weeks. Battery life is too short to be of any use.

— From the fact sheet for a fake product entitled Useless Plasticbox 1.2 (an actual empty plastic box) placed in L.A.-area Best Buy stores by an artist called Plastic Jesus