Nintendo's DS Lite redesign has proved a tremendous success, regularly topping hardware sales charts around the world since it was first released in Japan in March 2006. Despite the system's success, Pacific Crest Securities analyst Evan Wilson believes Nintendo has already finished work on its successor.
"Our contacts indicate that a refreshed DS is complete," Wilson said today in his holiday preview investor's note. "It is thinner (it has no GBA port), has on-board storage, and larger screens. However, we do not expect a revamped Wii or DS until sales begin to tail off in all three major geographies." As of press time, a Nintendo of America representative had not responded to GameSpot's request for comment.
In addition to dropping hints on a redesigned handheld, Wilson addressed the challenges publishers are facing during the jam-packed holiday retail season. Specifically, Wilson said Nintendo is placing publishers in a "difficult spot." With reorders for third-party DS and Wii games taking three to six weeks to fill, Wilson said publishers have a harder time adjusting if they underestimate sales and also risk having to take products back from retailers if their initial orders are too optimistic.
The holiday release torrent is also having adverse effects at retail chains. According to Wilson, the influx of Nintendo-platform releases, as well as bulky Guitar Hero and Rock Band packaging and a resurgence of sales for summer blockbuster game tie-ins due to holiday DVD releases, are contributing most significantly to retail real estate becoming a hot commodity.
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