Perhaps that time could eventually come, but it won’t be anytime soon. During Nintendo’s recent financials (via Nintendo Everything), the company’s president Shuntaro Furukawa said that they will be continuing to maintain its 3DS lineup. Furukawa says that pricing is one of the reasons why they believe that the 3DS won’t be replaced by the Switch yet as it represents an entry point for customers looking to get into the Nintendo ecosystem.
According to Furukawa, “Nintendo 3DS is set apart from Nintendo Switch by its characteristics as a handheld game system that is lightweight, price-friendly, and highly portable. Affordability is the strong point that positions Nintendo 3DS in a niche clearly separate from Nintendo Switch. In the grand scheme of things, Nintendo 3DS has a prominent position as the product that can be served as the first contact between Nintendo and many of its consumers, and for this reason we will keep the business going.”
This isn’t the first time that the idea of replacing the 3DS with the Switch has been floated, although former Nintendo president Tatsumi Kimishima stated that the company would only phase out the 3DS once the Switch becomes a one-person-one-system console.