Nintendo is forecasting global sales of four million 3DS units by the end of the financial year, March 2011 - effectively predicting demand in its first month on sale, following the news earlier today of a February 26, 2011 release for the handheld in Japan, followed by a March launch in the US and Europe.
Alongside the hardware expectations, it also predicts 15 million software sales specifically for the new handheld.
The forecasts come as the company slashed overall hardware and software sales expectations on its DS and Wii consoles for the full year, and reduced net income forecasts from ¥200 billion ($2.3bn / £1.5bn) to ¥90 billion ($1.07bn / £680m). Sales are expected to be ¥1.1 trillion, down from the prior ¥1.4 trillion.
Nintendo now expects to sell 23.5 million DS units for the full year, down from 30 million, and 125 million games for the system, down from 150 million.
Wii hardware sales are expected to reach 17.5 million units rather than the previous forecast of 18 million, and software sales of 135 million units, rather than 165 million.