March 2017 sees the next Nintendo games machine hit the market-- the strange tablet-console hybrid known as the Switch. Will the 127-year old Japanese company find success with the machine, or will it break it? Analysts are weighing in, and the predictions are, inevitably, varied.
First presented to the world through a slick announcement video on October 2016, the Switch is a machine of many parts. One can play it as one does a tablet or handheld console, but it can also be connected to a dock for home console gameplay on an HDTV. It has two controllers users can either connect to the tablet portion of the machine, use separately as Wii-style motion controllers or even use as single gamepads for 2-player action.
Whichever way one plays with it, the Switch is crucial for a Nintendo reeling from the commercial failure of the Wii U, whose global sales clock at just 13 million units during a 4-year lifespan. Will the Switch buck the trend? Analyst DFC Intelligence predicts Switch sales will reach 40m in 3 years-- behind Playstation 4 sales reaching 50m during the same timeframe, but ahead of the XBox One's 26m units sold.