Speaking with Gamasutra, Nintendo legend Shigeru Miyamoto discussed the 3DS and how launch sales weren’t as good as hoped. He mentions:
“When we launched the 3DS hardware we didn’t have Super Mario 3D Land, we didn’t have Mario Kart 7, we didn’t have Kid Icarus: Uprising,” he explained. “We were striving to have all of these ready for the launch, but we weren’t able to deliver them at that time.”
He goes on to explain that software is key to a successful system:
“We were kind of hoping that people would, nevertheless, buy into the product, find 3DS hardware promising; but looking back we have to say we realize the key software was missing when we launched the hardware.”
Nintendo has mentioned that they will not be making the same mistakes with the Wii U launch that they did with the 3DS, and with E3 around the corner the wait to find out isn’t far off.