The 3DS has launched in all major territories now and the launch period sales figures have been undoubtedly impressive.
Japan was the debut region for the 3DS and a reported 374,764 consoles were sold during its launch weekend with another 209,623 units shifted in the following week. Its debut week saw more consoles sold than all other platforms combined.
It enjoyed similar success in Europe when it proved to be the fastest-selling Nintendo handheld in European history by selling 303,000 units in just two days, with 113,000 of those consoles snapped up in the United Kingdom alone. In Australia, 31,000 3DS consoles were sold in four days, making it the fastest-selling handheld in Australian history.
Although the 3DS has performed well across the board, the president of Nintendo of America, Reggie Fils-Aime, feels that although the system's performance will likely be compared to that of the DS, their respective launches should not be lined up side by side. Speaking to USA Today, Fils-Aime views the two systems as two platforms having launched in different periods of social and economic times:
It really is apples and oranges. When we launched DS we launched going right into the Thanksgiving week (in 2004). From a pure timing seasonality, you are not going to be able to compare the two launches. We are going to be continuing to sell DS and that platform is going to continue to build on its legacy of the best-selling hardware system ever in the US. I would love to have the Nintendo 3DS eclipse that, but this is a new platform that we have just given birth to. I would love to have ongoing comparisons to the DS business because that would certainly mean we are doing a good job growing the Nintendo 3DS business.