The Nintendo Entertainment System was one of the most popular game consoles of all time and Nintendo thought they could keep this success going for years to come. Even with the announcement of the 16-bit Sega Mega Drive in 1988, Nintendo were still happy with their NES and thought 16-bit was premature or unnecessary. That was until they noticed the Mega Drive taking over the market due to its superior quality. Nintendo quickly began development of the Super Famicom.
Nintendo CEO Hiroshi Yamauchi once again put Masayuki Uemura in charge of creating the system. The Super Famicom would be 16-bit, just as they had originally wanted for the Famicom, but due to the high prices of such components at the time of making the Famicom, almost a decade before, it had to be 8-bit. But now, during the design of the Super Famicom, the prices had fallen much lower and could now be used in the console while still keeping production costs down.
The Super Famicom was released on the 21st November 1990 in Japan, and basically took over the market (about 80% of the market was eventually taken by the Super Famicom after it had been established). A shortage of supplies meant that the Super Famicom's US release would be delayed one year, meanwhile the success of the Genesis (The American version of the Mega Drive) continued to grow with its arcade ports and quality sports games.