Nintendo's Anti-Consumer AC Adapter Problem

New 3DS Does Not Include AC Adapter

Even though, after 44.1 million units sold, the Nintendo 3DS is likely in most gaming friendly households around the globe, enthusiasm for the New 3DS is still high. The promise of more powerful hardware, better 3D capabilities, and a larger screen are seemingly too hard to pass up, at least for the diehards among the Nintendo fan base.

In fact, a recent revelation by Nintendo suggests the New 3DS is developed specifically with existing 3DS owners in mind. At least that’s what most assumed Nintendo was thinking when they decided not to include an AC adapter with their New 3DS and 3DS XL units.

It’s a curious decision to say the least and one that Nintendo says was made to benefit the consumer. See, rather than include the AC adapters in the retail package, Nintendo decided to keep the adapter out and keep the New 3DS price as low as possible.

"New Nintendo 3DS XL uses the same AC adapter as any Nintendo 3DS or Nintendo DSi system. Rather than raise the cost of New Nintendo 3DS XL by charging consumers for a component they may already own, we are giving them the option to only buy if they need an AC adapter."

However, those who did not own a 3DS or DSi previously will be forced to purchase an AC adapter, and those who want to continue using their old 3DS concurrently or gift it to someone will have to do the same. The only good news is that 3DS AC adapters cost less than $10.

New Nintendo 3DS XL

Even so, it’s a strange move on Nintendo’s part not to include the adapter with the 3DS handhelds. Obviously they wanted to hit a price point that they deemed appealing to gamers, but why they didn’t just eat the extra cost is a mystery. The cord seems so trivial not to include, and so important to the system.

Then again, this isn’t the first time Nintendo has kept the AC adapter out of their handheld releases. Japanese gamers know the policy all to well, as most of their Nintendo handhelds have been sold without charging cables/plugs. Nintendo has even tried a similar thing in Europe, even while the North American versions came with charging solutions.

Ultimately, the decision to keep the AC adapter out won’t have a major impact on Nintendo’s standing, but it does raise a few eyebrows. For a while now Nintendo has been criticized for their inability to keep up with modern policies, and here is yet another strange example. It took them a while to get reliable internet functionality working and it was only with the Wii U that they released an HD console. However, they were the first to package an HDMI cable with their console, so it's not as if they are totally lost in certain regards.

In this case, though, the company is regressing for what seems like a silly reason. Keeping the AC adapter out is fine, but saying it’s to benefit the consumer is hard to believe.

How do you feel about Nintendo not including an AC adapter with their New 3DS handhelds? Do you think they should change this policy?

The New Nintendo 3DS and 3DS XL Launch February 13, 2015.

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