It’s common sense that new products need to appeal to be both innovative and different in order to carve their own niche.  But according to a recent study, even though Nintendo 3DS future purchasers are young and avid gamers, their gaming system has yet to distinguish itself among the myriad of others that are on the shelves today.

Interpret, a leading entertainment, media and technology market research firm, recently released its Interpretations report, “Nintendo 3DS: Fighting For Pocket Share,” which found that Nintendo’s greatest challenge is making their product stand out from the crowd.

The Nintendo 3DS’s no-glasses feature is an important factor, as Interpret’s 3D Entertainment Study shows that having to wear 3D glasses is the number one dislike among those who have experienced 3D technology (57% among those who have experienced 3D gaming). However, Interpret’s New Media Measure data shows that 79% of 3DS intenders already own a handheld gaming device (a Nintendo, Sony, or iOS handheld) and half own two or more devices. With the release of even more handheld devices in 2011—including the iPad 2, the Next Generation Portable, the Xperia Play, and a slew of powerful Android smart phones and tablets equipped with PlayStation Suite—Nintendo must differentiate itself even further to gain pocket share.

“Though the Nintendo 3DS distinguishes itself from the competitive set with its unique 3D entertainment features, it faces the challenge of entering an oversaturated market and overcrowded consumer pockets,” said Michael Cai, Interpret’s VP of Games & Technology. “Nintendo succeeded with its Blue Ocean strategy for the Wii, but in the portable and mobile gaming market, the water is deeper and muddier.”

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