Nintendo has been cagey on the release timing of its recently announced Wii U console, except to say that it would come out sometime in 2012. Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime let slip a more solid date earlier today.

“This is a device that will launch in 2012, after April 1st,” Fils-Aime told Forbes after he was asked how Nintendo would manage the fact that the Wii U would be on shelves at the same time as the Wii.

Fils-Aime points out that they successfully marketed the Wii and Game Cube alongside each other, as well as the Gameboy Advance and the Nintendo DS.

The Nintendo Wii U was shown off at E3 2011, featuring an iPad-like tablet controller that acted as a motion controller, a handheld controller and a display for showing secondary information — for instance, during a racing game the player might see a track outline on the tablet while the typical car racing view showed on screen.