Same old story
Nintendo is really sticking to its guns. At E3 less than a month ago, Nintendo maintained that the 3DS is a platform it’d keep supporting, citing a continued consumer demand as the reason it’s not yet dead. With this morning’s reveal of the Switch Lite— a portable-only Switch that effectively serves the exact same purpose as the 3DS, just with up-to-date hardware and more developer support — it’d seem reasonable to assume this is finally the moment when Nintendo would admit to the transition.
Nope! In a statement to The Verge, Nintendo of America president Doug Bowser echoed the exact same sentiment he expressed at E3. “We’ll continue to support our 3DS family of systems as long as there is demand,” Bowser said. Points for consistency, at least.
Truth be told, the support isn’t much more than obligation. The 3DS rarely gets firmware updates anymore, and they’re never anything beyond minor adjustments for system stability. What Bowser really means is that Nintendo will continue to manufacture the 2DS because an $80 handheld is a bargain that a lot of families are eager to invest in. In that sense, the 3DS isn’t dead and won’t be dead for a long time; but, in the sense that Nintendo (rightfully) gives nearly all of its attention to the Switch, the 3DS has been in the ground for quite some time.