By Dave Smith

Apple and Nintendo are two of the most innovative companies in the world. And even though the former company is the most valuable brand in the world, and exponentially more successful than Nintendo, there’s still much it could learn from the Japanese gaming company.

Take Thursday’s surprise announcement of Nintendo’s new console, “Switch.” We’d known Nintendo would unveil its new console in 2016 before launching it next March, but we had no idea when to expect the announcement. There were no press invitations, no hints from the company’s social media accounts. No one knew when to expect Nintendo’s bombshell.

And then, suddenly, on Wednesday night, it dropped, via Nintendo’s Twitter account:

Be among the first to discover #NX. Watch the Preview Trailer at 7am PT/10am ET!

— Nintendo of America (@NintendoAmerica) October 20, 2016

People were stunned. After years of hype, it was finally happening — and in such a short time frame, too. In contrast, Apple announces its product unveilings roughly a week ahead of time, but Nintendo wasn’t going to wait a week to unveil this thing — not even a day. Just a brief 12 hours or so.

And this event wouldn’t be an Apple-type gala, where the company would rent out a grand auditorium and invite executives and members of the press to an elaborate two-hour event, complete with musical guests.


Nintendo opted to release a 3-minute video on YouTube, at 10 a.m. on Thursday morning.

That’s it.

The overall timing was a bit suspect. Was Nintendo unaware that Wednesday night was the third and final presidential debate of one of the most bizarre election cycles in modern U.S. history? Would people get the word in time in order to tune in?

Well, as of Friday morning, it looks like Nintendo made a smart choice: In less than 24 hours online, Nintendo’s Switch unveiling has racked up over 10 million views on YouTube, and an extremely positive response from viewers (96.2% gave a thumbs-up, while 3.8% weren’t sold on the video).

As a longtime Nintendo fan who’s been less enchanted with the company’s hardware products in recent years, I thoroughly enjoye