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Mama mia! Nintendo trusts Wii U and Super Mario to boost sales

NINTENDO'S new Wii U will probably fly off store shelves when it goes on sale in the US tomorrow, giving the creator of Mario and Zelda a temporary boost as the Japanese company tries to rebound from its first annual loss.

The Wii U debuts in the US starting at $300 (€236) and shortages are likely as the company is expected to sell 3.5 million units this year, according to market researcher IHS Screen Digest.

The long-term outlook for the home console and its software isn't so promising as the world's biggest maker of video-game machines faces surging sales of smartphones and tablets, which have become a threat to established hardware and software makers.

Pressure is mounting on Nintendo president Satoru Iwata to repeat the success of the Wii console after the 3DS handheld player failed to meet sales expectations overseas, prompting the company to cut its profit goal by 70pc last month.

Nintendo and rival console makers Microsoft and Sony, are looking to protect their positions in the gaming market as consumers turn to smartphones and tablets such as Apple's iPad to play free games like 'Angry Birds'. (Bloomberg)

Irish Independent