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Switch vs DS Sales Comparison - November 2021

Switch vs DS Sales Comparison - November 2021 - Sales

by William D'Angelo , posted on 02 January 2022 / 4,039 Views

The VGChartz sales comparison series of articles are updated monthly and each one focuses on a different sales comparison using our estimated video game hardware figures. The charts include comparisons between the PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X|S, and Nintendo Switch, as well as with older platforms. There are articles based on our worldwide estimates, as well as the US, Europe, and Japan.

This monthly series compares the aligned worldwide sales of the Nintendo Switch and the Nintendo DS.

The DS launched in November 2004 in North America, December 2004 in Japan, and March 2005 in Europe, while the Nintendo Switch launched worldwide in March 2017. Therefore, the holiday periods for the two consoles do not lineup, which is why there are big increases and decreases.

Switch vs DS Sales Comparison - November 2021

Switch vs DS Sales Comparison - November 2021

Switch vs DS Sales Comparison - November 2021

Switch Vs. DS Global:

Gap change in latest month: 1,485,549 - Switch

Gap change over last 12 months: 3,309,359 - DS

Total Lead: 8,794,952 - DS

Switch Total Sales: 96,965,862

DS Total Sales: 105,760,814

November 2021 is the 57th month that the Nintendo Switch has been available for. During the latest month, the gap grew in favor of the Switch by 1.49 million units when compared to the DS during the same timeframe. In the last 12 months, the DS has outsold the Switch by 3.31 million units. The DS is ahead of the Switch by 8.79 million units.

The 57th month on sale for the Nintendo Switch is November 2021, while for the DS it is July 2009. The Switch has sold 96.97 million units, while the DS sold 105.76 million units during the same timeframe.

The Nintendo DS sold 154.02 million units lifetime. The Nintendo Switch is currently 57.05 million units behind the lifetime sales of the DS.


A life-long and avid gamer, William D'Angelo was first introduced to VGChartz in 2007. After years of supporting the site, he was brought on in 2010 as a junior analyst, working his way up to lead analyst in 2012. He has expanded his involvement in the gaming community by producing content on his own YouTube channel and Twitch channel dedicated to gaming Let's Plays and tutorials. You can contact the author at wdangelo@vgchartz.com or on Twitter @TrunksWD.


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19 Comments
INCITATUSBR (on 02 January 2022)

it is not an easy fight

  • +14
Eagle367 (on 02 January 2022)

I think switch has a real shot

  • +8
SvenTheTurkey Eagle367 (on 04 January 2022)

Yes, but only if Nintendo gives it the time it needs. They'll have to hold out until late 2024 or early 2025 for the switch to be able to catch the DS. On top of that, the announcement will have to happen no more than 6 months prior to release. Otherwise, the sales would tank.

The ds could have pulled out another 15-20 million units in 2 years if not for being replaced by the 3ds. It's a similar situation for the switch. Timing is everything.

  • 0
xMetroid (on 02 January 2022)

I can still see the Switch catching up on the DS. It lost a bit of proximity but i don't think the Switch will die as fast as the DS. Let's see if that will be enough to surpass it.

  • +6
Jumpin xMetroid (on 02 January 2022)

That's kind of my thoughts, too. Nintendo really wound down DS very quickly. I think if they're smart, they'll push through with dual tiered l support going into the next generation. Something that won't cause potential late adopters to fear their hardware and libraries becoming obsolete. That they'll be able to enjoy a few more years of support and won't have to put their existing content aside the moment they update.

That's just me, though. you don't have to agree with me on it. I like how PC and mobile software does it, always hated how consoles either had some shoddy backwards compatibility, or ignored it altogether.

  • +4
xMetroid Jumpin (on 02 January 2022)

We got hints that they might go into that route actually. Where the next Switch would just tie in for a few years until it takes over enventually and the cycle would go on. It's a new approach and would probably need some more clear explaining to do, but it would be possible to go a similar route like PC/Phones but with a longer cycle.

  • 0
SvenTheTurkey xMetroid (on 04 January 2022)

Wouldn't it just be more of a cross-gen situation like ps and Xbox? The trouble with the phone/PC comparison is that they have new hardware constantly.

When it comes to consoles it's a different beast with the rigid hardware specs. Even if they came out with a new iteration with much more power, it would be considered the successor. And it still wouldn't be recommended to buy other than for the back catalog. There wouldn't be enough support going forward.

If Nintendo had been releasing a new iteration every 2-3 years, I could see it turning into an ongoing ecosystem where old hardware eventually gets phased out. They waited too long for the 2017 switch to somehow be pulled along for more than a year or two.

Plus the fact that the hard cut is actually a benefit to the mainstream. They don't want to deal with researching what game works with what system. When someone buys a PS5, they know it plays ps5 games. Same with Xbox. Same with switch. On mobile, the app store stops you from buying a game that's incompatible. On PC, they expect you to know if you can run it. As long as physical media is still being used, consoles will continue to have a hard break.

I agree it could work for people like us who are into the hobby, but it just wouldn't work for the mass market at this time.

  • +1
CourageTCD (on 02 January 2022)

I think that, this time around, holidays boost won't make Switch's line touch DS's one in the graph

  • +5
Torpoleon (on 02 January 2022)

If Nintendo can hold off on releasing a Switch successor until at least Holiday 2024, then the Switch has a chance to surpass DS (and PS2). Any earlier and I'd say basically no chance.

  • +4
Alistair Torpoleon (on 03 January 2022)
  • -13
Slownenberg Torpoleon (on 03 January 2022)

Yeah Holiday 2024 might do it. I think they'll probably launch successor in Spring 2024 though and Switch will end up maybe just under 150mil.

Wouldn't mind them waiting until say Spring 2025 though so that Switch could pass DS and PS2 if that means we get a bunch more first party games late in the cycle like another 3D Mario ("Galactic Odyssey"??), the rumored new DK game, remasters/remakes of all Metroid Primes (though I'd vastly prefer just to have the trilogy together), maybe a remaster of Galaxy 2 since they oddly left that of All Starts for seemingly no reason, Zelda WW/TP remaster double pack, Pikmin 4, another Ring Fit, Wii Sports remaster or sequel, Mario strikers, Xenoblade 3, Excitebike game, Star Fox, Fzero, Wave Race, obviously a 2D Mario which I assume is coming anyways, Punch Out, Pokemon gen 9, all in addition to the games we already know about. All that would give Switch big years in '22, '23', and '24 to keep sales going and then Switch 2 launching March '25 would be perfect.

  • +1
Podings (on 06 January 2022)

How do the top graph in these always (or at least very often) end up mislabeled? ^^

It's tracking the Switch lead here, not the DS lead.

  • 0
OTBWY (on 03 January 2022)

When's DS lite?

  • 0
Kakadu18 OTBWY (on 03 January 2022)

2006

  • 0
Salnax OTBWY (on 03 January 2022)

Months 15 and 18 for the DS. And the DSi is Months 48 and 53, so that's both of the big DS revisions in the past now.

  • +1
lombrico (on 03 January 2022)

DS has already won, wii/home only users are not counted.

  • -5
Salnax lombrico (on 03 January 2022)

My grandmother had a DS Lite for Brain Age, and it never left her combined office/dining room area, let alone the house she lived in.

I know that's just a single anecdote, but it's really hard to determine how much of the DS's userbase regularly carried theirs' around.

  • 0
Podings lombrico (on 06 January 2022)

In the Wii / DS era, Nintendo sold 250 million systems within a seven-year timeframe, so yeah, there's not much contest in that department. :D

However, it's very likely that Nintendo is making more money on software this generation, do to greater focus on the gamer market, and fewer distribution costs associated with digital sales. Many many Wiis were sold to parents and institutions that never bought a single piece of software, due to Wii Sports being packed in.

  • +3
2zosteven Podings (on 06 January 2022)

well stated!

  • +1