Nintendo reported a surprise operating income of 1.1 billion yen, or $9.3 million, in its quarterly earnings report released on Wednesday. That beats analyst expectations that the Japanese video game giant would lose about $51 million.
It’s a decent start to the company’s new fiscal year, after the previous ended in March with the company’s first annual profit since 2011.
Nintendo also reported selling 470,000 Wii U consoles between April and June in the earnings report. That — at long last — inches the struggling console above the 10-million-units-sold milestone.
It’s a big number, primarily because in 2008 then Xbox chief Don Mattrick famously said “the first company to reach 10 million in console sales wins the generation battle.”
Sony won that race for the current generation, announcing its 10 millionth PlayStation 4 sale in August 2014 — about nine months after the console was released. Microsoft’s Xbox One wasn’t trailing too far behind, hitting the milestone about 3 months later.
Nintendo’s Wii U was released a full year before the competition in November 2012, but it has struggled from the beginning. Nintendo is now sitting on the sidelines as Sony and Microsoft to duke it out for video game supremacy.
It took Nintendo 2 years and 7 months to count that elusive 10 millionth sale, more than three times as long as it took for the PS4.
But Nintendo is already moving on to what it sees as the next gaming battleground — smartphones.
The company announced earlier this year that it would step into the smartphone and tablet game market, and in Wednesday’s report the company said it’s counting that new source of revenue to help boost the company to another — about twice as large — annual profit of more than $400 million.
Wednesday’s report comes just weeks after Nintendo president Satoru Iwata died of cancer. The company has yet to name his successor.