Nintendo Wii U to Stand up against PS4, Xbox 720
Nintendo is scheduled to release the Wii U, its next-generation video game console, in time for this year’s holiday season. This gives it a substantial lead time against any next-generation competitors from either Sony or Microsoft, both of which haven’t announced the successors to their PlayStation 3 or Xbox 360.
This is both an opportunity and a risk for Nintendo. On one hand, the extra year or so before the first real competition starts hitting store shelves could allow its third-party partners to develop a compelling software library as a buffer against whatever new hardware either Microsoft or Sony could bring into play. On the other hand, the newer consoles may simply bring more to the table than what Nintendo expects.
For his part, Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime has expressed confidence that his company’s newest offering would be a viable performer in the market for a long time. He touted the Wii U’s “great graphics,” “robust online execution” and good third-party support.
In the same vein, he expressed confidence on the Wii U’s ability to compete well against any successors to the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3. Fils-Aime didn’t give a blanket statement of confidence, but suggested that Nintendo could adjust its approach depending on what Microsoft’s and Sony’s next-generation consoles would bring to the table.
Nintendo’s Wii U is due to hit store shelves first in the United States on November 18, in Europe on November 30 and in its native Japan on December 8. In America, pre-orders of the new console disappeared almost immediately, and rights to get launch-day units are already selling for a substantial amount higher than the $300/$350 list price.