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SYFY WIRE Nintendo

Even with PS5 and Xbox X launches, Nintendo Switch remains top selling console in the U.S.

By Nivea Serrao
Nintendo Switch

With gangs of bandits currently stealing PlayStation 5s from delivery trucks themselves, there's no doubt there's high demand for the recently released console. But despite that, another company's gaming devices have reigned supreme, outselling both Sony's PS5 and Microsoft's also just-released Xbox series X, in the last month: the Nintendo Switch and Nintendo Switch Lite.

According to data from The NPD Group, a retail analytics firm, both the Switch and the Switch Lite sold 1.35 million units last month in the United States alone. Not only did this cement its position as the top-selling console for the whole month of November, but it also solidified its streak of having achieved this milestone for a record-breaking 24 months in a row.

Adding to this is the fact that with Nintendo having sold 6.92 million units stateside so far, it has already sold more consoles in America in the 11 months of 2020 so far than it had in all of 2019, outselling its previous total by 426,000. This marks an increase in its numbers by more than 40 percent per year, with overall sales reaching 68.3 million units since the Switch first launched in 2017. Not bad for a three-year-old console.

Of course, there are a few other factors involved here.

These figures don't take into account console sales in Asia or Europe, other key markets, that might have seen a different result in the past month. What's more, neither Sony nor Microsoft has released their own sales numbers following the launches of both the PS5 and the Xbox Series X/S last month, though they've both publicly stated that they'd each seen the biggest launch in console history, indicating that the devices have sold millions worldwide.

However, since the initial launch of the PS5, the console has been hard to find, with several stores and sites selling out both in-person and online — a problem the Switch still struggles with too, but not to the same degree. So even though many sites and stores were running Black Friday deals on Switch bundles and games, Nintendo now has an established supply chain in place that allows it to match its demand should any retailer run out of stock. So, it's a big deal — but it's very likely the supply issues for PS5s and the new Xbox are clearly a factor here.

Adding to the Switch's appeal is its library of casual and family-friendly games, many of which have seen an increase in popularity due to the pandemic-caused lockdowns. Animal Crossing: New Horizons was one of the biggest selling games of the year, breaking records for Nintendo, while also proving possibly beneficial for players mental health.

And with a new Zelda game having recently been released — a follow-up to 2017's critically-acclaimed Breath of the Wild — and Mario celebrating his 35th anniversary, and Nintendo marking it with special editions of the Switch, it's clear its popularity will continue for some time — at least until Sony solves its bandit and supply problem.