PocketGamer.biz Week That Was: Profits fall at Apple, Nintendo's back in black and the return of Boyfriend Maker
The past 7 days in bite-sized portions
This week saw Nintendo publish its annual financials, which showed a return to profit for the Japanese gaming giant.
But before Mario fans don their party hats, it's worth noting that the firm incurred operating losses of $200 million and that the 3DS and Wii U both failed to meet their sales targets.
In fact, Nintendo was only saved from a second consecutive year of losses by a favourable exchange rate – depreciation of the yen provided exchange gains of $396 million.
While it's too early to judge the Wii U – home consoles often start out slow, and Nintendo consoles almost always do – the 3DS has been on the market for two years now. And after a rocky start, Nintendo has really boosted the device's flagging fortunes.
Nevertheless, 40 percent of all 3DS hardware sales to date have been in Japan, and Nintendo admits that it has still failed to generate the desired sales momentum overseas.
Its solution? A greater focus on the digital distribution of its first party retail games.
On one level, that makes sense. Digital distribution yields greater profit for Nintendo and provides added choice and convenience for the consumer (and, ideally, lower price points). But Nintendo is hardly playing to its strengths with this strategy.
Bear in mind that this is a company that still uses friend codes for online interactions on the 3DS.
And since eShop purchases are tied to devices rather than accounts, Nintendo might have a tough time convincing consumers to bulk out their digital libraries. After all, if a 3DS owner loses their console, they'll lose their downloaded game collection with it.
But that's enough ruminating on Nintendo's idiosyncrasies (we'd be here all day). Instead, let's take a look back at the last seven days of mobile gaming news, interviews and features on PocketGamer.biz.
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