IR Information

Financial Results Briefing
for Fiscal Year Ended March 2012
Apr. 27, 2012
BACK | 1 2 3 4 5 | NEXT

You will strongly feel the changes in the thoughts of third-party software developers, overseas developers in particular, for the better.


Moreover, we are planning to progress in earnest for the release of the Nintendo 3DS in Asia in this fiscal year.
We already announced the release of the Nintendo 3DS in Korea tomorrow, on April 28, and we will launch it in other areas in Asia during this fiscal term. Further information on the specific launch dates and prices will be announced by our local subsidiaries. Thank you for your patience.


At our previous Corporate Management Policy Briefing in January this year, I explained that the company would aim to significantly expand its digital business both in order to adapt to the changes in the circumstances surrounding the video game industry and to create a new business opportunity.


The Internet connection ratio forms the basis for deploying a digital business. In the case of Nintendo 3DS, the net connection ratio has been growing gradually. In the Japanese and the U.S. markets, over 70% of the hardware units sold have been connected to the Internet, which is the highest ratio among all the handheld video game systems Nintendo has launched. Also, as time goes by, a gradual increase has been observed, which is a sign of sound growth. In contrast, the ratio in the European and Australian markets is about 50%, which is not a satisfactory level yet. However, when we make the comparison with the previous handheld game systems in the same markets, the situation has significantly improved.
And, consumers are not visiting the Nintendo eShop only once. The number of repeat visitors has largely grown in comparison to that for our previous platforms such as the Wii and the Nintendo DSi. This trend has been maintained even after the turn of the year.

Of course, we know that the Nintendo eShop still has room for improvement. However, we have a strong feeling that the foundation for us to deploy our digital businesses has been properly laid out.

As I said earlier today, we announced during the latest Nintendo Direct that the completely new 2D Mario game, “New Super Mario Bros. 2,” will be launched in August this year.


With this software, we will initiate the so-called digital download sales, or the digital distribution of packaged software, in addition to the sales of packaged software through the existing distribution channels. In principle, starting from this software, the company will offer the software titles that Nintendo itself publishes in both packaged and digital download formats so that our consumers can choose the way to purchase them.

We will later announce the official title and the launch date of the software that we tentatively call “Onitore,” but this software too is scheduled to be sold in both the packaged and the digital download formats.

Since the packaged and the digital download formats both have their own merits, we would like to offer both of these options to our consumers.


The digitally downloaded software will be stored in the consumer’s SD memory card and be playable only with the hardware to which it was downloaded so that, unlike how you can share the packaged software which are stored in game card format, the consumer cannot share the software with other Nintendo 3DS systems owned by other members of the family or friends. Also, vacant space in SD memory card is needed in order to store the digital download software. On the other hand, as consumers can purchase the software through the Internet, they do not have to visit the retail outlets, be concerned about an out-of-stock situation or even carry around multiple game cards in order to play digitally downloaded counterparts when they are away from home. Nintendo publishes various titles that enable you to enjoy daily communication, such as “nintendogs,” “Animal Crossing” and “Tomodachi Collection,” in addition to the ones like “Onitore” (temp.), with which you might like to practice every day, and database-type software like “Hana to Ikimono Rittai Zukan” (sold in Japan only). It must be easier for the Nintendo 3DS owners to feel the merit of being able to carry around only the Nintendo 3DS system with, in particular, these kinds of software titles stored inside. As for other kinds of software, users who like to play different game titles in turn on one Nintendo 3DS system should feel that this option is handy. Nintendo will ensure to properly explain to consumers the different merits associated with the packaged software and the digital download software so that they can make the purchase decision they prefer.


It seems that, in general, digital distribution of the software available today is mainly aiming at no involvement from retailers. On the contrary, Nintendo has decided to choose an approach in which we will ask our retailers to be proactively involved.

Of course, for all the digital download software, we ultimately need our consumers to download them to their Nintendo 3DS system through the Nintendo eShop. However, when it comes to how our consumers choose the candidates and make the final purchase decision, as well as how they pay for the software, we are going to enable consumers to go through these processes at both retailers and the Nintendo eShop.


Our consumers can visit retail outlets or the retailers’ online shopping sites, look for products of interest, make a purchase decision and actually pay for the product there. The retailers then can issue the 16-digit software exchange code. As you can see on the screen now, consumers can enter the 16-digit code at the Nintendo eShop to download the software.

Some may wonder why we are adding this kind of process, as it may seem more complicated. However, for the majority of our consumers, this is a familiar process as they are already accustomed to making payments at the retail outlets, and it can lower their psychological barrier to making online purchases. Some consumers are hesitant in purchasing digital download software because they are concerned about inputting their credit card numbers. Also, payments by credit cards or cell phones are unavailable to some people under a certain age. Accordingly, offering a familiar payment method should lower the hurdle for our consumers to purchase digital download software.


Furthermore, we recognize that one of the biggest hurdles for the expansion of our digital business is the limited methods to expose digitally downloadable products to potential consumers. This recognition is one of the reasons why we are taking this sort of approach.

As I just said, the net connection ratio of Nintendo 3DS has grown significantly higher than that for other Nintendo handheld systems. The ratio of Nintendo 3DS owners who have visited the Nintendo eShop, as well as their visit frequencies, has also risen far above the level achieved by the Wii and the Nintendo DSi.
Naturally, consumers can digitally buy packaged software at the Nintendo eShop. However, if only the consumers who proactively visit the Nintendo eShop are aware of the digital download software that we deploy, there is no chance that our digital business can drastically expand.

Nintendo’s basic strategy is to expand the gaming population. We would like as many people as possible, regardless of age, gender and game play experience, to have access to our product messages.


From that perspective, for our digital business to grow drastically, it is imperative for us to expand the exposure of the digital download products to potential consumers.


BACK | 1 2 3 4 5 | NEXT

Page Top