Iwata concerned early 3DS price cut will cause Wii U buyers to tarry

By Stephany Nunneley
3 August 2011 20:59 GMT

Nintendo president Satoru Iwata has said the firm is a bit concerned that since it marked the price down on 3DS so soon after launch, that consumers may hold out on purchasing Wii U in the hopes Nintendo will make a similar move with the console.

Speaking to investors during a Q&A, Iwata said the markdown for 3DS was a combination of the sales situations in Japan, the US and Europe, as well as consumer feedback. Usually, said Iwata, price reductions come around the year-end sales season, but with the markdown, 3DS systems will allow “big software titles to rapidly spread,” eventually causing a profitable year-end sales season.

“Our intention is to drastically change the trend with the great impact of the price markdown, to have explosive sales with big software titles based on the changed trend, and thereby to lengthen the life of the Nintendo 3DS for a sound platform business,” he said.

“We believe that our decision could bring the life of the platform back on its intended track.

“With regard to the influence on the Wii U, what we have to take most seriously is that the price markdown could damage the trust of the consumers who bought the Nintendo 3DS just after the launch. I feel greatly accountable for it. Our decision of the price markdown this time has a side effect that, at the launch of the Wii U, people may feel that the price might drop in the near future if they wait. Nevertheless, we have decided to cut down the price of the Nintendo 3DS as we consider it as a necessary decision now. What we will be able to do to recover the consumers’ trust before the launch of the Wii U is very important to us.”

Iwata went on to say not to expect a price for the new hardware nor a date for it until sometime after March 31, 2012.

“Since the Wii U we showed you at the E3 show in June was still in the development phase without very specific proposals on the software titles, we are going to announce the release date and the price next year when we are able to explain the specific proposals,” he said.

“Wii U will not be launched by the end of March next year, I do not intend to speak about it anymore in detail, but I would like to speak about it more when the appropriate time comes, but the Wii U is not simply a Wii with a different user interface and we are not proposing to society a performance-enhanced Wii, rather we are proposing hardware with a totally different concept and vision.”

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