March 22nd, 2016, 19:09 PM
Nintendo will reportedly cease production of Wii U by end of year
The life of the Wii U, Nintendo’s troubled home video game console, will be cut short. According to a report from Japanese newspaper Nikkei, Nintendo will cease production of the tablet/console hybrid in 2016. The end of the Wii U will likely align with the launch of Nintendo’s latest hardware, tentatively named Nintendo NX.
Nintendo struggled to popularize the Wii U, which launched in 2012, a year before the Sony’s PlayStation 4 and Microsoft’s Xbox One. The Wii U lacked the graphical capability, online functionality, and third-party software support of its competitors, while the Wii U tablet wasn’t as mobile or intuitive as Android or iOS devices.
According to Nintendo, the company has sold roughly 12.6 million Wii U’s worldwide, a diminutive number when set alongside the 36 million PlayStation 4s sold in a shorter window of time. By comparison, Nintendo sold over 100 million Nintendo Wiis between 2006 and 2013.
Not all news is bad news for Nintendo. Today, the company's stock jumped after it found its first mobile hit in the newly released app, Miitomo. The app is currently at the top of Japan app store’s free download chart.
Though Nintendo will bring production of the Wii U to an end, there is no official word on whether or not the system will stop being sold by video retailers. Nintendo has been reached for comment.