At a keynote speech at the 2003 Tokyo Game Show, current Nintendo president Satoru Iwata expressed his concern that games were becoming too complicated and could alienate the nongaming crowd. He then stated that it was his company's goal of expanding the population of gamers.
Now, Nikkei BP's TechOn Web site reports that during Iwata's presentation at the Japanese Wii preview event last week, he said Nintendo had stepped closer to achieving that goal. Tellingly, Iwata's presentation was titled "Datsu Gemu Banare," or "The End of Indifference to Games."
As an indicator of the market's health, Iwata cited the number of game users per household in light of the Nintendo DS's popularity. Console game machine users usually number between 2.2 and 2.8 users per household. By contrast, the Nintendo DS is used by three people on average per home--on other handhelds, this figure is 2.0 per household. Iwata speculated that "adjusting for single-person households, there are probably households of four or more in which everyone plays the DS."
Using figures from Media Create, Iwata showed how the DS has risen from a minority 16.8 percent share of the game market in 2005 to a 57.8 percent share in 2006. However, Iwata said the next big challenge for Nintendo will be putting Wiis in living rooms. "The popularity of the DS does not 100 percent guarantee that the Wii will be popular," Iwata admitted.