The Wii is, of course, the hot-ticket item this Christmas, just like last year. And once again, there aren’t enough to go around.
Micah and I frequently watch G4, the “geek” network. During one of their news segments, G4 brought in some people to discuss the Wii supply and demand problem. Some hinted that Nintendo was doing this on purpose to keep demand and prices high.
One of them, however, thought that the low supply would actually hurt Nintendo and help their competitors. How? He put forward the following scenario.
First, most of us can agree that if Nintendo produced a thousand more Wiis, they’d jump right off the shelves. So unless Nintendo is selling Wiis at a loss, they’re avoiding some profits.
Maybe they’re counting on people staying in the buying mood until they can actually get there hands on one. This is where the commentator found the hitch.
Suppose that you’re a parent who’s been desperately trying to get their hands on a Wii for the last few months. If you can’t get one, at some point you just give up. Christmas is 10 days away. You start to look for alternatives.
If you have 2 kids, you could spend the same amount of money on getting them a couple Nintendo DS‘s. Or maybe you never got the X-Box 360 or GameCube…and you get one simply to have a new gaming system to offer your children. Even the expensive PS3 is looking good compared to some Wii prices.
I’ve played the Wii and it’s one of the only systems that I can actually handle (I suck at gaming, it’s sad). It’s a lot of fun. I recognize its value and I doubt that there’ll be a time in the next few years where Wiis will sit forgotten and forlorn on Best Buy’s shelves. At the same time, I think that Nintendo is unwise to keep its supply so low at this time of year.
What about you? Are you searching for a Wii? Would you consider buying a competitor just to have something under the tree?
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photo by Marcin Chady