Nintendo DS gamers leaving for Facebook? Not a chance, Iwata says

Nintendo 3DS FarmVilleAnd still the doubting masses refused to shut up. Nintendo president Satoru Iwata told investors recently that Facebook and mobile games have not hurt usage of the Nintendo DS handheld console, and he has the data to prove it, Gamasutra reports. The Nintendo chief presented his investors with two internal surveys to support his claim.

The first of which covers Japanese networks Gree and Mobage's effect on the Nintendo DS, and after polling 3,035 Tokyo and Osaka residents found some interesting results. According to the survey, over 75 percent of paying Mobage and Gree players are more likely than any other group questioned to still actively use their DS.

Of course, this is quite contrary to the belief that mobile and social games are gobbling up a market once dominated by traditional handheld games. However, the US is another story entirely.

After polling 4,385 people, Nintendo found that, while Facebook gamers are more likely to be active DS gamers than any type of DS player, the percentage of active DS players is much lower overall in the states than in Japan. And, with gaming already the most popular use of smartphones, that percentage is bound to drop ... eventually. So, are DS gamers leaving for Facebook and the iPhone? No, it's simpler than that: There are over 100 million more Facebook gamers than Nintendo DS systems have been sold since its launch.

Nintendo study

[Image Credit: Gamasutra]

Do you think the Nintendo DS can survive against the growing mobile and social games markets? How will Iwata answer to Facebook and the iPhone as they continue to grow? Sound off in the comments. Add Comment.
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