Wii U sales data – not as impressive as Nintendo’s press release would have you believe

Analysing Nintendo’s recent Press Release from a certain perspective makes it seem that there is something funny up with the reported sales figures.

It has barely been over 40 days since Nintendo dropped their hot new home console, Wii U, on the market and the madness of the holiday rush has finally come to an end. As usual, gaming consoles went flying off store shelves from top retailers, with Wii U obviously being one of them.

However it was only a few days after its launch that we started hearing talk about Wii U consoles sitting on store shelves – something that’s not typical for a newly released home console – and sales data has been all but non-existent ever since. In fact, I myself saw around ten Premium Wii U units sitting on a shelf in Toys”R”Us (Twitter image) in my local area around noon on Black Friday and I live in the largest city on the Gulf Coast. This was a store that had been open since 8PM the previous evening and had lines wrapped around the building beforehand – shouldn’t these units have been sold minutes after the doors opened?
Since then, sales data has been scarce, only with Nintendo of America’s president, Reggie Fils-Aime, telling CNET that, “the Wii U topped the Wii with 400,000 units sold” after its first week on the market and a January 3rd article at GameSpot that offered a statement from a Sterne Agee analyst, which read: “Wii U availability at GameStop continues to be ‘abundant.’”
That is, until Nintendo’s recent excited Press Release on just this topic that can be found unedited through this jump (thanks to Gamasutra): Nintendo’s December 2012 Hardware Sales Press Release.

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