Despite my addiction to The Age of Empires (and the rest of the franchise), I’m not much of a gamer. Nevertheless, last year a friend of mine let me borrow his Nintendo Wii and after a couple of hours spent playing some of its simpler games, I was hooked. Apparently I’m not alone, for nearly 10.17 million Americans bought a Wii in 2008, according to The NPD Group, and there are more than15 million Wii consoles in U.S. homes. Also in 2008, another 9.95 million bought the Nintendo DS portable system.
What a sharp contrast to the continuing struggles of Sony (s sne) and its PlayStation 3 game system. Nintendo’s focus on simplicity and experience has allowed it to expand well beyond the gamer crowd to capture nearly 55 percent of the next-generation console market. Apple (s AAPL) has made similar strides in the non-corporate smartphone market with the iPhone. Now if Nintendo and Apple could just find a way to work together, instead of acting like the bitter rivals they’ve become.