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Will the Nintendo Switch drop in price?

Will the Nintendo Switch ever see a price drop?

Mark Walton

Nintendo president Shuntaro Furukawa said in a recent interview with Nikkei Asia that the company has no plans to increase the price of the Switch “currently”. Although the system “production and shipping costs have gone up,” but Furukawa said Nintendo wants to “avoid pricing people out” of its console ecosystem (a concern that Meta apparently doesn’t have, which recently raised the asking price for its Quest 2 VR headset).

While some have interpreted the wording “at this time” as implying future Switch price increases, all of this talk has brought us to a few different issues. That said, why haven’t we seen Nintendo Switch prices drop in over five years? Can we forever expect Nintendo to offer the system for less than its launch price?

Historical anomalies We know there's a lot going on in this graph, but it's still pretty easy to identify the Switch as a major outlier.

The Switch itself is a real class when it comes to consistent console pricing. At the time of writing, the Switch has been available in North America for over five years (nearly 2,000 days), but it still sells for the same $299.99 in the US that it paid when the system launched in March 2017.

Zoom / $300 Switch is still cheaper considering inflation one of the game consoles.

While most consoles see a distinct downward pricing trend shortly after launch, the Switch has sat still for five years.

enlarge/Accounting for inflation, the $300 Switch is still one of the cheaper consoles. While most consoles see a clear trend of price cuts soon after launch, the Switch has been stagnant for five years.

To say that this is unprecedented in the gaming industry, it is not at all Not too much.

Looking back at the history of console pricing, we found that the vast majority of consoles saw their first price drop within a year or two of release. This model covers successful systems, notorious systems like the PS2 (which dropped from $300 to $200 after about 17 months in the US) and the Wii U (which dropped $50 in price only 10 months after launch) , and pretty much everything in between.

The few consoles that don’t get a price cut in their second full year are almost always in the first Three years saw some sort of decline. The Switch, on the other hand, is now in its third, fourth, and fifth year at its original price.

Zoom in / We know a lot is happening in this chart things, but it’s still easy to identify Switch as a major outlier.

If the Switch were an

enlargeWe know there's a lot going on in this graph, but it's still pretty easy to identify the Switch as a major outlier./
If the Switch were the “regular” console, it would cost between $150 and $180 today.

Five years after launch, the average console (by then Production hasn’t stopped completely) sells for about 50% to 60% of its nominally posted price (depending on whether you’re looking at the average or median). The Switch is still at 100% of its nominal launch price five years after launch, a huge outlier.

The only one that really has the same price stability on the Nintendo Wii as the Switch. The system finally dropped from $250 to $200 in November 2009, just over 1,100 days after its launch in late 2006. For its part, the Switch is now threatening to double that record.



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