The Switch Has Been the Best-Selling U.S. Console for Almost Two Years

You could say that the Nintendo Switch tops.

The Nintendo Switch has been the best-selling hardware platform in the U.S. for 23 consecutive months, just one month short of two full years.

The data was confirmed by The NPD Group, an industry tracking firm. According to analyst Mat Piscatella, the Switch set a new U.S. October hardware sales record. The previous record high was held by the Nintendo Wii 12 years ago in Oct. 2008. The year-to-date Switch hardware dollar sales are the second-highest in U.S. history, again besting the 2008 year-to-date total of the Nintendo Wii.

Via Business Wire, Nintendo confirms over 735,000 Switch and Switch Lite units were sold in the U.S. in October 2020, showcasing a growth of 136% when compared to October in 2019. The NPD Group says that, to date, the Nintendo Switch has sold more than 22.5 million units in the U.S. In Nintendo’s latest earnings report, uploaded on Nov. 5, it’s been revealed that the Switch has sold over 68.3 million hardware units and 456.49 million software units worldwide.

“Nintendo Switch and Nintendo Switch Lite continue to provide one-of-a-kind gaming experiences on the TV or on the go, allowing holiday shoppers the choice of a video game system that matches their lifestyle,” said Doug Bowser, the President of Nintendo of America. “Seeing encouraging sales growth like this in the fourth October of Nintendo Switch proves to us that the system has many more years and great games yet to come.”

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Nintendo of America SVP of sales and marketing Nick Chavez tells The Verge that there has been “an unprecedented demand for Nintendo Switch throughout the course of the year,” and that the COVID-19 pandemic has certainly “created more opportunities to stay at home, more play time at home.” He attributes the Animal Crossing: New Horizons-themed Nintendo Switch as a significant reason as to why the console has sold so well.

It’s not surprising, for it’s absolutely one of the biggest games of the year. Back in August, an earnings report showed the game was continuing to break records since its release on March 20, 2020. At the time, the title had sold over 22.4 million units, surpassing the sales of Super Smash Bros. Ultimate and becoming the second biggest Nintendo Switch game. That number was accomplished in a few months. The latest report on the top-selling title sales units displays that this number has risen to 26.04 million units.

Mario Kart 8 Deluxe is still in the lead with 28.99 million units. This is likely why there will be a Black Friday bundle for the Nintendo Switch that will include a download code for the digital version of Mario Kart 8 Deluxe along with a three-month individual membership to Nintendo Switch Online, the platform’s online service.

Additionally, Chavez states a large part of its growth has come from “an influx of women playing Nintendo Switch, more kids and teenagers playing Nintendo Switch, as well as parents.” Even though the Xbox Series X|S and the PlayStation 5 launched just this week, there are no signs of the Nintendo Switch’s popularity dwindling anytime soon.

“It’s always exciting when new consoles enter the video game marketplace,” says Chavez. “It’s great to see the PS5 and the Xbox Series S and X coming into the marketplace. But we do think that the Nintendo Switch occupies a fundamentally different position, and really has a unique proposition for shoppers and players.”

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Natalie Flores

Natalie is Fanbyte's Featured Contributor, with bylines at places like VICE, Polygon, PC Gamer, Paste Magazine, and more.

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