Putting Nintendo Switch’s 8.2 million US Switch sales in context

This morning, Nintendo sent out one of its periodic brag-heavy business press releases, this time focusing on a strong start to the US holiday shopping season. In addition to updates on lifetime US sales for the 3DS family of systems (22 million), and recent Classic Edition systems (2.5 million for SNES Classic, 2 million for NES Classic), the release highlighted more than 8.2 million lifetime US sales for the Nintendo Switch (through November 26).

That sounds pretty impressive for a system that has just hit its 20-month anniversary on retail shelves, without even two full holiday seasons under its belt. But we wanted to figure out just how those sales stack up to the competition. So we tracked down some numbers for past consoles for comparison. As you can see, the Switch’s US sales pace puts it in some pretty elite company:

(Unless otherwise noted, all data comes from NPD US sales estimates, pulled from the following online sources: (1) (2) (3) (4) (5) (6).)

Note that staggered release dates in the calendar year can mean some consoles enjoyed busier sales periods during their first months on sale. Also note that inconsistencies in publicly reported NPD numbers means the closest comparable time periods vary slightly for some of these consoles. We weren’t able to find US or North America-specific numbers for the PS4 or Xbox One; if you know where they can be found, please pass them along and we’ll update.

If you like these numbers, you might also be interested in last year’s examination of the Switch’s first nine months of worldwide sales, which comprised 10 million units.

Also, while we’re here, here’s how the Switch currently stacks up against the shipments of some other Nintendo hardware (as reported in this handy Nintendo spreadsheet).

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