Nintendo Switch Destined to Break Records as the Best-Selling Console in History

Could the Nintendo Switch become the most-sold games console of all time?

5 Min Read

In their most recently published earnings reports, Nintendo has officially announced that the Switch has sold 122.5 million units worldwide. This means the Switch has outsold the previous third-best console, which was the Game Boy/Game Boy Color.

So, with only 30-million-ish units needed to steal the throne, could we eventually see the Switch becoming the best-selling games console of all time?

Could the Switch Become the Best-Selling Games Console of All Time?

Although it is entirely possible, the Switch would need to sell around 30 million more units to overtake the current best-selling console; the PlayStation 2. This isn’t entirely impossible but seeing as only 14.91 million units were sold in FY 2023, we would need this level of growth to maintain for two more years.

Take the usage of only with a grain of salt, however. The Xbox Series X/S, Microsoft’s flagship console, has still only sold an estimated 12 million units since its 2020 release. To put that into perspective, in FY 2023 the Switch outsold the Xbox in its entire three years of existence.

To show you what the Switch is up against, take a look at the following table of the top five best-selling consoles of all time, as of February 2023:

ConsoleRelease YearUnits Sold
PlayStation 22000155+ million (final sales greater than reported)
Nintendo DS2004154.02 million
Nintendo Switch2017122.55 million
Game Boy & Game Boy Color1989, 1998118.69 million
PlayStation 42013117.2 million

However, the 14.91 million units sold in FY 2023 is actually a sharp 21.3% decrease over Switch sales during FY 2022. If this number continues to drop, it could be a hard climb for the handheld to reach the throne.

So, What Could Cause the Switch to Outsell the PlayStation 2?

Well for one, Nintendo claimed the drop in sales was due to the semiconductor and other components shortage. Not quite the pandemic levels of shortages that saw the Switch being scalped for over $500, however. They also briefly eluded that this was over and that they were ramping up Switch production.

Nintendo also needs to bring out some more big hitters. Already, we have the much-awaited Breath of the Wild sequel; The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom. TotK will be released this year, so could increase Switch sales significantly as the game has been long awaited by RPG fans.

They would probably need another massive game like Animal Crossing: New Horizons, that took the world by storm; giving Nintendo their best financial year ever in FY 2021. Could we see a New Horizons sequel on the Switch? We can only hope…

Although the likelihood of seeing a Switch Pro model now seems to be very unrealistic this late in the device’s life, and with the Switch OLED release, it could definitely provide the catalyst needed for the Switch to be the most-sold console of all time.

The Switch OLED alone saw a 92.5% increase in sales in FY 2023, so it is clear fans prefer the bigger screen over a smaller price tag. Out of those numbers, for those that weren’t prior Switch owners, the pro model could be what’s needed for most Switch owners to purchase a second.

So, to summarize it is entirely possible that the Switch could sell 30 million more units in the next two years. This would lead it to surpass PlayStation 2 sales and take the throne of being the most-sold games console of all time. However, unless Nintendo has some big plans for the console, the climb to the top is going to be hard.

What do you think? Let us know in the comments!

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By Miles
Miles is a passionate writer, with a keen interest in writing engaging and intriguing content on all things Nintendo. Franchises such as Animal Crossing, The Legend of Zelda, and Mario have provided Miles with countless hours of fun, thus why he happily writes about them!
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