Analyst firm Lazard Capital Markets has revealed that it expects that Nintendo to launch its new 3DS system in Japan late this year, and with a US release following in March 2011.
LCM describes the Nintendo 3DS as the “winner at E3”, and thinks that when it does release in the west, it will be at a $249-$299 price point.
“We have little doubt that the 3DS will prove successful for Nintendo and quite possibly third-party software publishers, as the 3D-effects will give reason for consumers to upgrade from their current devices, as well as potentially reduce the cannibalistic impact from smartphones and tablets,” says LCM analyst Colin Sebastian.
“Our conversations with developers and publishers suggest there is broad support for the 3DS,” he adds. “We believe [3DS] will resonate well with consumers.”
The firm wasn’t so kind on Nintendo when it came to Wii, however, suggesting that Microsoft and Sony’s latest motion offerings will steal some of its thunder, although he did have some hope for the machine.
“High price points for Kinect and Move could be the Wii’s salvation during the upcoming holiday season,” argues Sebastian. “Meanwhile, a strong slate of first-party software from Nintendo should keep core fans engaged with the platform until there is a platform refresh, as early as 2011, in our view.”
Finally, the analyst said that his firm predict a $100 to $150 range for Kinect, with anything above $150 unlikely considering Wii’s current price ($199). He also added some praise for Sony saying it “turned a new page and now is developing a broader digital entertainment platform.”
Nintendo are expected to announce the release date of the 3DS later this year, while Microsoft is expected to reveal the cost of Kinect at gamescom in August.