The Nintendo Switch isn't quite selling as well as it could. It has nothing to do with consumer interest or demand, both of which are there in spades. The issue is supply. No one can keep a Switch in stock, and this is severely hurting the console's sales. Well, Nintendo is planning to fix the Switch's availability problem by making more units.
According to Financial Times they're gunning to increase the manufacturing load to 18 million units by the start of their fiscal 2019 tenure. This means that they'll attempt to move an additional 15 million or so units before March of 2018. This is up from the reported 10 million units that Nintendo was planning to ship throughout the fiscal year.
So, why is Nintendo bumping up the production rate of Nintendo Switch units? Well, according to Financial Times, the stock shortages are starting to turn potential customers into those with "tantrums." Shopping fatigue looking for a Switch in the wild may end up turning people off altogether, and instead of buying a Switch they'll end up buying some other device instead.
Nintendo doesn't want to lose out on potential sales, so they're putting more units on store shelves to accommodate customers who are looking to grab a Switch.
The system has been sold out everywhere since launching on March 3rd. They haven't been able to keep them in stock since then, and most stores such as Best Buy, Wal-Mart and GameStop have opted to start charging more for the units by putting them in makeshift bundle packs for $499.99 to capitalize on the demand.
GameStop also went so far as to state that they don't expect people to be able to walk into a store and pick up a Switch casually until around May of 2018. Nintendo boosting up production supplies could remedy this situation and make the Switch more widely available throughout the summer and leading into fall.
GamesIndustry.biz, however, is reporting that production may still find itself in a bind due to LCD screen shortages. This could end up hurting production rates even more, which comes at an inopportune time, considering that Capcom just announced that Monster Hunter XX is due out at the end of August in Japan for the Nintendo Switch. This news may not seem all that big, but the mind share of Monster Hunter in the East is absolutely mammoth, and it was so big that it caused Nintendo's stock prices to jump to a nine-year high.
The real meat of the Monster Hunter news wasn't just that the 3DS title was being ported to the Switch, but that Switch and 3DS players would be able to play together thanks to cross-play. This confirms long-running rumors that Nintendo would bolster the appeal of the Switch by porting 3DS titles to the system and adding some kind of cross-platform functionality.
There are also rumors of a potential Pokemon game coming to the Switch as well. If the software line-up really will be as strong as some of the rumors say, then they will absolutely need to ramp up production, because even with a rather thin library the Nintendo Switch is selling like crazy during the off-season. One could only imagine how much the system would sell once Splatoon 2, Skyrim, NBA 2K18 and Super Mario Odyssey arrive later in the year.