Nikke: Iwata Outlines Smartphone App for Miis, Sales Targets on Track

Nintendo hasn’t had their investor’s meeting for Quarterly Earnings yet, but already the company has ambitious ideas for the next few years. In a recent pair of interviews, president Satoru Iwata outlined some of his plans for reinventing the company, including low-cost 3DS games and QOL. In a further interview with Nikke, Iwata discussed the state of Wii U, another way Nintendo plans to harness smartphones, and more.

We learned early last year that Nintendo would, eventually, develop and release smart phone apps designed to promote their products. Or, in Mr. Iwata’s words, will “allow customers to identify with Nintendo products and make people pay attention to Nintendo games.” So far, only a Mario Kart TV app has been released to tie in with Mario Kart 8. However, Mr. Iwata did brought up the conceit of a Mii app for smart phones, one that allows users to design Mii avatars outiside of Nintendo hardware.

For example, some Nintendo game consoles incorporate Mii, which creates a digital avatar to represent players. It would be fun for players to use their Mii characters as icons on social media. We are currently developing an application that will allow users to do that. The app will be announced around the time our full-year results are released.

Mr. Iwata also expressed confidence that Nintendo will hit their sales targets this fiscal year for Wii U and 3DS. The 3DS has one shot left at meeting its 9 million sales target (revised from an earlier 12 million), but Wii U is much closer to meeting its goal of 3.83 million units shipped. Of the Wii U’s growing business, Mr. Iwata thinks the platform has room to grow, and that sales patterns are a result of cultural differences.

I believe the Wii U business still has considerable room for growth, as a number of software titles that are compatible with the console are slated for release in 2015.

The way Japanese gamers enjoy video games is different from their counterparts in the West. More and more Japanese gamers play on smartphones and 3DS hand-held devices. On the other hand, a majority of gamers in Europe and the U.S. still connect their consoles to TVs and play them on a bigger screen. In the global video game market, game titles for consoles are still dominant, and that market is much larger.

A closer look at this Mii-centric app, and more plans to revive the hardware business, will surely be shown after Nintendo’s fiscal year ends at the end of March. Do you think that there’s a chance for the Wii U to sell well in 2015, much less for the New 3DS to revive the 3DS business? Let us know in the comments section.

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Editor-in-Chief (Former)

A man with a plan. My favorite video game franchise is Pokemon, but his favorite video game is Resident Evil 4. I can also tell you trivial cartoon factoids.