Successor to Wii should be ready for E3

Nintendo is launching a successor to the Wii, the game console whose monster success following its 2006 bow has since faded.

The new console should be ready for test driving at the E3 game show in Los Angeles in June. Nintendo has yet to unveil specs or any other details.

The Wii has sold 86 million units worldwide, but in the 2010 financial year sales dropped to 15 million compared with 20 million the previous year. Nintendo predicts that console sales will fall 14% in the current fiscal year to 13 million units while Wii software sales will drop 30% to 120 million units.

On Monday, the company also unveiled financial results for the fiscal year ending in March. Net income plunged 66% to $946 million, while sales slid 29.3% to $12.32 billion.

A faltering Wii and slumping DS sales, down to 17 million units compared with 27 million the year before, contributed to the decline.

For the current fiscal year the company expects net income to rise to $1.34 billion.

One reason for the brighter outlook is the 3DS handheld, whose sales are forecast to rise from 3.61 million units last year to 16 million units in the current fiscal year.

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