Nintendo says it’s still internally discussing the concept and launch timing for its next gaming system.
In a management briefing following the publication of its latest financial results on Thursday, the company included a slide referencing its “next gaming system.”
Nintendo Switch Online + Expansion Pack overview trailer
Regarding its next-gen plans, Nintendo reportedly said it is still going through internal discussions on the hardware concept and launch timing, suggesting many significant details have yet to be finalised.
Additionally, Nintendo reiterated that it believes Switch is still in the middle phase of its lifecycle and that it’s seeking a sixth year of growth for the platform aided by the new OLED model and a diverse software lineup.
Switch launched in March 2017, Switch Lite was released in September 2019, and the Switch OLED model launched in October 2021.
Nintendo stated in May that investment in Switch’s successor had contributed to a record annual research and development spend at the company.
The company has previously said that making dedicated hardware to play its games on is central to its ability to create unique entertainment experiences.
President Shuntaro Furukawa discussed Nintendo’s approach to developing and launching new gaming hardware in a Nikkei interview (paywall) published in February.
The exec claimed Nintendo doesn’t have a specific time frame in mind for hardware development, rather it is “constantly researching technology” in a bid to create new experiences.
“The hardware and software development teams are in the same building, communicating closely and thinking about how we can propose new forms of entertainment,” he said.
“In order to create a single piece of hardware, we have to do a lot of preparation several years in advance, so we are working without stopping. In the end, the deciding factor in whether or not to commercialise a product is whether it can create a new experience.”
Nintendo revealed on Thursday that Switch has shipped 92.87 million units. The company expects the system to overtake Wii (101.63 million units) to become its best-selling console platform before the end of its fiscal year in March 2022.
However, Nintendo also said it had cut its annual Switch shipment forecast by 6%, from 25.5 million units to 24 million units, “because of the change in our production plan due to the effects of the global semiconductor shortage”, and that it won’t be able to meet demand for the console this holiday season.