Can the Wii U fix Nintendo's problems, or will the company have to do something more drastic?
Nintendo is one of the most iconic companies in gaming, but it faces the real possibility of oblivion if it doesn't find a way to turn its fortunes around.
In October 2007, less than a year after the release of its blockbusterWiiconsole, Nintendo was worth $78.50 per share. That equated to amarket cap of $85 billion-- double the value of Sony at the time.
However, Nintendo's fortunes have only gone south since then. With Wii sales cooling and mobile apps the hot trend in gaming, Nintendo's stock collapsed this month to $14.50 per share, leaving it with a market cap of just $14.8 billion, a fifth of its value in 2007.
Super Mario just isn't so super anymore.
What happened to Nintendo, a company that has been around for 123 years? A variety of trends have dramatically changed the gaming industry over the last 5 years:
Mobile gaming is growing. Nearly half of smartphone users say they play a mobile game daily. That's great for Apple, but not so great for Nintendo, which has yet to release a game for iOS orAndroid.
The Nintendo 3DS, the company's most recent handheld gaming device,failed to meet expectations, forcing Nintendo to cut its price to boost sales. Sales arenow picking up, but it's simply not generating as much revenue as Nintendo had hoped.