We haven’t even known the price for the Wii U for more than a few days, but analyst Michael Pachter is already predicting a price cut for Nintendo‘s new console. Unlike the 3DS — which saw its price drop within the first six months of release — Pachter predicts that this price cut should happen sometime before the Holiday of 2013. Still not a full year for the Wii U to enjoy its $300 and $350 price points, but enough for it to tally some profits through one fall season.
The way Pachter sees it Nintendo unveiled the Wii U at a higher price to “maximize initial sales from its core audience,” or, in other words, to get the most money possible from Nintendo fan boys. But after about March 31st of next year, he surmises the core fan base’s enthusiasm to taper off, and for Nintendo to announce a price cut as early as the summer of 2013.
However, Pachter makes all of these claims assuming the Wii U will have some competition in the form of Microsoft’s Xbox 720 and Sony’s PS4. While both Sony and Microsoft seem to be pointing towards a 2014 release for their respective consoles, Pachter appears to be working under the assumption we’ll be hearing more from the two companies very soon.
“We don’t expect a price cut until summer 2013, at the earliest, but do expect a cut prior to holiday 2013. Any prospective price cut will depend largely on competition, which we expect to materialize in the coming weeks.”
It could be that Pachter is referencing the summer of 2013 as “the coming weeks” but even that isn’t an absolute certainty. It was all but assumed that Microsoft and/or Sony would give some sort of hint towards the next-gen — despite claims to the contrary — at E3 2012, but when they didn’t most fans accepted the fact the companies were sticking to their claims.
Both still find their consoles extremely viable in today’s market, and would rather not confuse consumers with talk of additional hardware, at least not yet. Nintendo, on the other hand, needed to make a move, and the Wii U appears to be that step forward. It’s not a huge leap forward considering the Wii U isn’t being unveiled in connection with next-gen content, but it’s also still early.
Pachter loves to make bold predictions, and is oftentimes wrong in those assumptions, but his claims still make for interesting discussion fodder. Will the Wii U see a price cut before it turns a year old? If the current pricing is only for the core fan base what is the acceptable price point for the new console?
For full details on Nintendo’s Wii U make sure to check out our announcement post.
The Nintendo Wii U will hit store shelves on November 18, 2012.