Video game giant Nintendo has announced that it has sold some 30 million Wii consoles in the United States alone. Nintendo launched the Wii console in November 2006, and it achieved sales of 30 million units in 45 months. In comparison, the Sony PlayStation 2—still available, and still the top-selling console of all time—took about 60 months to sell 30 million units in the United States.
The sales achievement helps cement the Wii’s position as the fastest-selling console in video gaming history; however, industry watchers wonder just how much higher that figure will go, as Wii console sales have slumped significantly in 2010 while Sony’s PlayStation 3—introduced at the same time as the Wii—is seeing a strong surge of sales.
“This milestone is another reminder that people want fun games they can play with others—all at a value-minded price,” said Nintendo of America’s VP of sales and marketing Cammie Dunaway, in a statement.
Price—along with the Wii’s unique motion-sensing controller—were key differentiating factors in the initial success of the Wii: where competing systems from Microsoft and Sony were ranging as high as $600, the Nintendo Wii came in at a more consumer-friendly $250. And consumers responded: for the first full two years of the Wii’s availability it was difficult to find a retailer with a Wii on the shelves.
NIntendo is promising to keep the Wii’s momentum going with a flurry of new game titles scheduled for this fall, including installments in the Metroid, Donkey Kong, and Pokemon franchises as well as NBA Jam from EA Sports, GoldenEye 007 from Activision, and a section of titles from Ubisoft, Sega, and Disney.
However, the Wii will also face significant competition from the more-powerful Xbox 360 and Sony PlayStation 3, both of which are debuting their motion-based control systems this year.