The new Wii Remote Jacket  (Source: Nintendo)
Nintendo foots $17.2 million bill to give free Wii Remote Jackets to all

There are a lot of Wii consoles around – not just sitting in store shelves, mind you, but in peoples’ homes. According to recent market data, the Nintendo now owns the largest installed user base worldwide, with over 10 million sold.

Earlier this week, Nintendo announced that it would supply up to four free Wii Remote Jackets – controller covers made of silicone rubber – to every owner of a Wii console. Furthermore, Wii Remote Jackets will begin shipping with Wii consoles, Remotes and Wii Play starting next week.

The free accessory was made specifically to fit the Wii Remote and “provide cushioning for the Wii Remote for people who might accidentally throw or drop their Wii Remotes while playing games.”

According to Japanese news publication Asahi Shimbun, the free Wii Remote-upgrading accessory program will cost Nintendo 2 billion yen (nearly $17.2 million). With around 10 million Wii consoles in homes, Nintendo could potentially be mailing out 40 million Wii Remote Jackets worldwide.

Given Nintendo’s exceptional financial market performance of late, the cost of giving away free Wii Remote accessories appears to be just a drop in the bucket.

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