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Nintendo says sales of its Wii U consoles have flopped, pushing it to a third consecutive annual loss and raising questions over its future in a home console market increasingly dominated by Sony and Microsoft.
The Japanese company slashed its global Wii U sales forecast for the year to March 31 by almost 70 percent to 2.8 million units. It cut its sales forecast for its handheld 3DS to 13.5 million units from 18 million. The Wii U is the successor to its hit Wii console.
Nintendo's president, Satoru Iwata, who last year pledged to return the hobbled game maker to profit this business year, apologized to shareholders at a briefing in Osaka on Friay, but said his failure to fulfill his promise did not mean he had to resign.
Pressure will likely mount on the architect of the Wii success in 2006 to step aside or shift course to focus on making money from "Super Mario" and other software titles. Nintendo so far has refused to allow its games to be played on machines built by competitors or on tablets or other mobile devices that are used by gamers.
In the past the company has blamed a lack of titles for poor sales, but even its popular family-friendly games are losing out on sales to more hard-core titles like "Grand Theft Auto" played on rival machines.