IHS Screen Digest has predicted the 3DS will sell well in the coming years but believes the original DS line will still reign supreme as the top-selling Nintendo handheld.

The company's research suggests 3DS will shift 11.6m units worldwide by the end of 2011, compared to the DS's first-year sales of 13.1m. Screen Digest estimates the new handheld will sell 70m machines across the globe before 2015; the DS had sold 91m at the same point in its life cycle.

Explaining why it believes the console won't overcome its predecessor, Screen Digest believes that the system's sales will be eroded by the increasing sales of smartphones and tablets, but highlights Nintendo's strategy of giving users an incentive to take the console around with them every day.

This engagement strategy, alongside 3D graphics, camera and video, is key to Nintendo competing with upcoming devices from Sony and also from non-specialist smartphones, entertainment devices and tablets, which offer a legitimate alternative to handheld consoles.

Do you think 3DS can beat the sales success of the DS line?
The DS launched in 2004. By the end of 2010, the console had sold 136m units worldwide.

[via mcvuk.com]