On March 27th, the Nintendo 3DS will officially be one year old. It's been a rocky first year for the new handheld; a poor initial showing led to a major price cut, which, along with increasingly better games, has led to a major resurgence in recent months.

How major, you ask? Nintendo announced today that the 3DS sales have already outpaced the DS: To date, over 4.5 million 3DS' have been sold - That's almost double the 2.3 million DS' sold in its first year. 

The 3DS showed similar improvements in the hardware department. Nearly double the number of 3DS games have been sold, nine million copies to the DS' five million.

For Nintendo, that means the 3DS as a whole — consoles, games, accessories, etc — has generated more than 1.2 billion dollars in sales. DS consoles, games, and accessories led $540 million its first year.

The 3DS' improved performance over the original DS may be tied to the 3DS' stronger software offerings. The DS had 58 games one year out. The 3DS is expected to have more than 100 by the end of March. The console's infamous 80-dollar price cut most likely played a huge role in the console's rate of growth, as well.

All I know is that Nintendo better give the 3DS one hell of a birthday present.

[Via Business Wire]