The Nintendo Switch OLED Shortage Just Got Even Worse News

If you've been having a difficult time finding the recently-released Nintendo Switch OLED, you definitely aren't alone. It's a tale we're sure most are tired of hearing: global supply disruptions have made new hardware difficult to find, and the Switch OLED is not immune to the issue. In fact, a new report details the cuts Nintendo has had to make to its Switch sales forecast for its current fiscal year, and those cuts are significant.

Nintendo Switch production targets cut as OLED model launches

According to Nikkei Asia, Nintendo has been forced to cut its production targets by 20% for the 2021 fiscal year, ending in March 2022. Nintendo originally targeted 30 million unit sales for the fiscal year as a whole – an ambitious target for a platform that's coming up on its 5th birthday, but obtainable given the Switch's popularity. Now, Nintendo reportedly expects only to produce 24 million, a target that comes after earlier revisions to that initial goal.

Like every other company that makes consumer electronics, Nintendo is feeling the squeeze of the global semiconductor shortage prompted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Switch sales actually spiked at the beginning of the pandemic, as here in the US, states began implementing lockdowns right around the time that Animal Crossing: New Horizons launched for the platform.

The sudden interest in the Switch and gaming in general made Animal Crossing: New Horizons one of the best-selling games for the platform seemingly overnight, and it led to Switch shortages in the early days of the pandemic. Demand for the Switch remains strong, which is contributing to current stock shortages as well.

In a brief statement to Nikkei Asia, a Nintendo spokesperson suggested that the impact of these component shortages is still being determined, saying simply, "We are assessing their impact on our production." Still, even if the decrease in production targets isn't as bad as Nikkei's report suggests it will be, component shortages are still a reality of the world we currently live in.

Nintendo is in good company

Of course, Nintendo isn't alone in its struggle to secure components for new gaming hardware. However, it has good company in its current position, as Microsoft and Sony are grappling with the same issues and have been for quite some time. With the component shortage, PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X consoles are still hard to find a year out from release.

While there are signs that the component shortage may be easing a little bit – for instance, the Xbox Series S is readily available in many places – manufacturers have indicated that we could be in this for the long haul as well. At best, it seems that the component shortage is expected to start getting better at some point in 2022, though we may not see noticeable improvement until we're into 2023.