With the hype of launch day for the Nintendo Switch, the furor to own the newest and hottest piece of technology has arrived with it – and as always, scalpers are looking to take advantage of the situation.
Even a cursory look at eBay confirms what most could probably predict – that people are overcharging for their preorders:
This comes as some suppliers are reporting massive delays with the Nintendo Switch, such as the UK retailer GAME:
— AJMS (@aazer_stewart99) March 3, 2017
The listing on eBay for some posts was as high as $1000, but most total prices hovered around the $400 range – still a 33% markup compared to the retail price. That might be steep, but some folks are desperate to play the new console.
Nintendo has a track record of creating false shortages at the launch of their new systems but assured the world that would not be an issue this time around – despite only making 2 million consoles available at launch worldwide. Nintendo America boss Reggie Fils-Amie told Wired back in January on the potential shortages:
What we’ve said publicly is that there will be 2 million units that will be shipped worldwide for the launch, essentially through month one.
I know, because I read the boards and I read the comments, that there is concern about supply. From what I’ve read, the concern seems to stem from the lack of ability to buy NES Classic. So what I would say is this: two million for essentially the first month is a huge number, especially when you look and see that this is not peak seasonality. This is essentially the first three weeks of March. Our focus is making sure that the consumer who wants to buy a Nintendo Switch can buy a Nintendo Switch. That’s how we build our supply chain, that’s how we think through the amount of product that’s available.
What happened with NES Classic is that was a situation where the global demand was well in excess of anything we had anticipated, and that’s what created shortages. The good news, at least for consumers in the Americas, is we’re going to continue to make the NES Classic available. With the ongoing level of supply, the ongoing demand is going to be met. We know the concern.
Given that the worldwide launch number was divided across all regions, there could potentially be plenty of people left without a Switch in their hands come launch day – something that could potentially hurt sales for the console overall.
Analysts have been disagreeing on how many units the Switch will move in the first year – estimates have ranged between around 4 and 10 million.