The Nintendo 3DS family is officially discontinued, eShop and online services will continue

Nintendo Switch Lite Image
Nintendo Switch Lite Image (Image credit: iMore)

What you need to know

  • The Nintendo 3DS is a portable gaming system that originally released in 2011, to mild fanfare.
  • The platform has matured and grown considerably since then, and to date has sold nearly 80 million units.
  • However, Nintendo has confirmed that production of the entire 3DS family is officially discontinued.
  • This is so Nintendo can focus all of their efforts on the Nintendo Switch.

A legendary family of portable gaming devices is coming to an end, according to a report with After over nine years of production, and even longer if previous generations are taken into consideration, the entire Nintendo 3DS family is being discontinued by Nintendo. The DS set the bar for portable gaming for years, and continues to be an instantly recognizable and influential device, but has understandably fallen out of favor in the wake of the massively successful and far more versatile Nintendo Switch.

With the Nintendo Switch going from strength to strength, improving its impressive line-up of games like some of the best platformers around, it makes sense that Nintendo would want to focus all of their efforts there. However, this will mark the first time since 1989 that Nintendo has only sold a single family of devices, and certainly marks the end of an important era in gaming.

However, the Nintendo 3DS exiting production does not mean its immediate demise. Nintendo told "We currently have no plans to end any existing online services for the Nintendo 3DS family of systems. Online play and Nintendo eShop will continue to be available and it will be possible to access and redownload all previously purchased content in the foreseeable future."

Players will be able to continue buying games, accessories and more from third-parties, while all of the 3DS's online services will continue to operate normally. Players will also be able to buy games digitally from the eShop, and redownload any previously purchased content, so there is still more fun to be had out of the Nintendo 3DS yet. With a massive game library spanning over 1,000 titles, including most of the modern Pokemon games, plenty of players will still be whipping out their 3DS for a few hours of fun.

If you're in the market for a Nintendo 3DS, it's now or never, unless you're willing to buy used.

Zachary Boddy

Zachary Boddy is the Minecraft Expert and a News Writer for Windows Central, Android Central, and iMore. They have been gaming and writing for most of their life, and have been freelancing for iMore and its sister sites since 2019, with a focus on Xbox and PC gaming. You can find Zachary on Twitter @BoddyZachary.