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You are here: MacNN Forums > Community > MacNN Lounge > Limited stock of XBox360s... does microsoft benefit?

Limited stock of XBox360s... does microsoft benefit?
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torsoboy
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Nov 22, 2005, 04:56 AM
 
Well the 360 was officially released here about 2 hours ago, and it seemed a lot more of a trickle than a release. I thought it would be nice to go get myself one, and a few of the stores didn't do the reserve thingy, so people still would have a chance tonight at midnight (well, last night now technically)... after rambling around the city for a little while here are the numbers I could come up with:

Walmart #1 - 14 units (4x$399, 10x$299)
Walmart #2 - 14 units (4x$399, 10x$299) - This is the second largest walmart in the country
KMart - ~12 units
Sears - ~12 units
Target - ~12 units
BestBuy - ~30 units
GameStop - 30 units (all previously reserved)
-------------------------------------
So, from this count there were around 125 available. Plus the other little gaming places in town we may be up to around 200 - 250 tops. This is in an area of about 100,000 people.

What the heck kind of "release" is that??? Pitifull. So my question is, what is the benefit to Microsoft to release such a small quantity of consoles on their release day? It seems that their price would remain the same ($299 and $399) if they were to release five or ten times that many, and they most likely would sell within the first few days. So if it isn't the whole supply vs demand thing, is it because they are having production problems? or maybe they just finished the final version like 5 days ago and barely have started mass producing them?

What do you all think the reason behind this super limited release is? And who does it benefit?
     
Thorin
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Nov 22, 2005, 05:39 AM
 
I think part of the problem is that they're attempting to launch in North America, Europe and Japan within a few weeks of each other. I don't think any console's been launched like that before, and a couple of months ago there were quotes from some Microsoft exec saying he had no idea how they were going to do it.

Turns out they can't do it by the looks of things.
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Link
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Nov 22, 2005, 06:11 AM
 
Sure MS benefits! Don't you see the psychology in this?

"The X-Box 360 was so hot it sold out in EVERY store we put it in! We couldn't get it on the shelves fast enough!!"

"People are paying so much on ebay to get one without fighting in a store or finding all stores out of stock"

etc etc.

Easy "hot ticket item". I think Apple's done this with most of their iPods, the iMac G4, G5, and many other Mac models. Of course, a lot of the time it's not intentional, but it doesn't exactly hinder the popularity
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Nov 22, 2005, 06:19 AM
 
Free marketing. As link said.





P.S. Aloha Link. Welcome back.
     
BasketofPuppies
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Nov 22, 2005, 06:23 AM
 
Indeed. The PlayStation Portable sold over 600,000 units on its North American launch day, but since it didn't sell out, it was seen as a failure.

Then again, Nintendo was able to sell a whole lot of Nintendo 64's by claiming they would be difficult to come by, but "somehow" became easy to find on the North American launch day.
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Cubeoid
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Nov 22, 2005, 06:31 AM
 
Speaking of Nintendo. I just invented a new word. A person who likes Nintendo will now be called a Nintendiac.
     
Agasthya
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Nov 22, 2005, 11:19 AM
 
My guess is that as Christmas approaches, they are going to begin to slowly saturate the market with systems and since people will remember this shortage, they will buy the system if they were previously on the border.

EDIT: Didn't see BasketofPuppies's message. Same idea as Nintendo, I guess, just a more direct approach.
     
waxcrash
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Nov 22, 2005, 11:39 AM
 
This was being predicted a month ago…

http://www.joystiq.com/entry/1234000337064097/
     
ort888
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Nov 22, 2005, 11:47 AM
 
I think they are holding back in order to have a constant supply heading to the stores for the holiday season.

At any rate, the demand for this thing is insane. Every store in my area has had a total mob scene. I went to Sams club at 5:45 in the morning and was the 18th person in line. This was all special business members who are allowed into the store 2 hours before regular members. By 7am there were 100 people in line for 20 systems. Even after the manager said to everyone, "hey, we only have 20 systems" the people remained in line. WTF?

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Salty
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Nov 22, 2005, 12:39 PM
 
My BestBuy is going to have like 70 or so in, and I start at 1:30... sigh I'm glad I don't work in media
     
production_coordinator
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Nov 22, 2005, 12:46 PM
 
Good thing I'm going to pass on the 360.
     
ort888
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Nov 22, 2005, 12:52 PM
 
Originally Posted by Salty
My BestBuy is going to have like 70 or so in, and I start at 1:30... sigh I'm glad I don't work in media

Your Best Buy is sold out. Every store in my area had a line around the block.

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torsoboy  (op)
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Nov 22, 2005, 01:38 PM
 
Originally Posted by Agasthya
My guess is that as Christmas approaches, they are going to begin to slowly saturate the market with systems and since people will remember this shortage, they will buy the system if they were previously on the border.

EDIT: Didn't see BasketofPuppies's message. Same idea as Nintendo, I guess, just a more direct approach.
I think you are probably right. Dang mind games!
     
andreas_g4
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Nov 22, 2005, 01:48 PM
 
One argument pro artificial supply problems is that M$ can be quite sure that no one, who wants to get an XBox, will probably get another gaming system, sinde Nintendo and Sony are only with "old" systems on the market.
     
wuzup101
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Nov 22, 2005, 01:53 PM
 
Same thing here... every place has been sold out for months (preorder) or sold out last night in seconds. Either way, it was expected because of the shortage. I remember looking at a spread sheet that was posted on xbox-scene.com which had all the best buy store numbers and the number of systems they were going to carry. I think for most of them it was around a dozen pro and 40-50 core (or possibly the other way around).

The sad thing is I wanted one, and would have easily forked over the cash for one, but now if I can't get one to january or feb (like many retailers are saying) I may just save my money for the PS3. Don't get me wrong, I am an Xbox fan, but that was just a dumb move. "The Xbox 360 sold out in every store!"... "We sold damn near 100 units"...
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Maflynn
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Nov 22, 2005, 01:53 PM
 
Am I the only one who thinks there's something wrong here.

It's just a came console. If the people wait tlll after Christmas they won't have any problems finding one.

I saw a news segment which showed kids and parents camping out hoping to get one. I'm not sure what kind of message that sends. A mother sleepinging on a sidewalk just so little johnny can play his video Games. The odds are little johnny already has the older xbox why can't he wait?

I dunno - I guess it is just me.

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DeathMan
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Nov 22, 2005, 01:55 PM
 
what effect can artificial supply problems have on the potential sale of gamecubes and ps2s? If the 360 were in stock, wouldn't the issue be the same?

I wonder if its to control damage on first generation, Rev. A products, hoping if there is something big wrong, they can spot it after shipping 2 million units, rather than 10 million units.

It does make sense that they're just generating buzz, though. Getting people to camp out and whatnot.


//sorry for the crappy grammar there. I merged two sentences in one there...
( Last edited by DeathMan; Nov 22, 2005 at 04:12 PM. )
     
ort888
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Nov 22, 2005, 01:56 PM
 
Well, it is going head to head with stuff like the PSP and iPods. If a kids parents are rich, and he wants a 360, and they can't find one... they will move onto other high ticket items.

If M$ wants to take advantage of the head start they have on sony, they need to get the systems out there ASAP. Because next Xmas the PS3 will be the hot ticket.

I really do think that this is a forced supply and demand issue and they are holding back for marketing reasons.

Damn Bill Gates made me get up at 5:30 am! Bass Turd!

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Chuckit
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Nov 22, 2005, 02:55 PM
 
Originally Posted by Maflynn
Am I the only one who thinks there's something wrong here.

It's just a came console. If the people wait tlll after Christmas they won't have any problems finding one.

I saw a news segment which showed kids and parents camping out hoping to get one. I'm not sure what kind of message that sends. A mother sleepinging on a sidewalk just so little johnny can play his video Games. The odds are little johnny already has the older xbox why can't he wait?
It sounds like you have no sense of fun.
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olePigeon
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Nov 22, 2005, 03:23 PM
 
Microsoft is limiting the amount of XBoxes on purpose. Their idea is that there will always be a small amount of XBoxes available instead of a large amount at once, and none available later.

So instead of waiting in line only every other day, you get to wait in line every single day for months.
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Maflynn
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Nov 22, 2005, 04:37 PM
 
Originally Posted by Chuckit
It sounds like you have no sense of fun.

How so? I'm not saying they're useless or anything - in fact I enjoy playing some games on my mac. My point is endure all of that hardship when in a little while the units will be plentiful.

I also have an issue of parents sleeping out on the street for a game console - I just think it sends a wrong message to kids. Patience is not a bad thing and if you can teach your kids to wait a little while I think that's a better lesson then giving them everything they want.

Mike
     
SShoot3r
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Nov 22, 2005, 04:57 PM
 
I got mine at Target. I was the 44th person out of 48 total systems!
     
Kerrigan
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Nov 22, 2005, 05:49 PM
 
I get your point, Maflynn. There is something strange about parents camping out to make sure their coddled nerd child gets their 360 before everyone else.
     
ort888
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Nov 22, 2005, 06:02 PM
 
When I was in line, I would say that about a 3rd of the people waiting where parents. Some with their kids and some without.

I do think it's a little messed up. Wwhen I was a kid my parents wouldn't let me have a video game system. I had to pay for them myself. I hated it then, but in retrospect I think it was the best way to go.

It took my brother and I a year to save up the $150 for NES and we are better off for it.

Anyway, the most messed up person was a woman in her late 50s who would not shut up about her grandson. Sams had 20 Xboxes and she was about the 50th person in line. She would not stop yakking about how hard she was trying to get her grandson a 360. Blah blah blah blah. She was annoying. You could tell she was trying to guilt one of us grown nerds into letting her butt in line or something, but no one was having it.

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Chuckit
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Nov 22, 2005, 06:10 PM
 
Originally Posted by Kerrigan
I get your point, Maflynn. There is something strange about parents camping out to make sure their coddled nerd child gets their 360 before everyone else.
I've camped out for lots of things before. Concerts, movies, video game systems. It's a few hours to get something that is worth it to you. It's hardly a big sacrifice. It can even be fun.

While you're at it, you may as well complain about parents who spend a lot of time shuttling their children around to sporting events — they're actually sacrificing a lot more of their time and at much less convenient hours than parents who waited a little while for a 360. Oh my gosh, parents spending time on their kids!
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Nov 22, 2005, 07:37 PM
 
Marketing. What a wonderful world of misrepresentation and mind games. And advertising works hand-in-hand with marketing to plant the misrepresentations and false ideas in the consumers' minds.

I just rethink whatever I want to buy in terms of how much I'll really use it, how much it costs in comparison to that level of use, and (very importantly) how much hype there is about it in the media. I haven't even bought Tiger yet!

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BasketofPuppies
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Nov 22, 2005, 08:09 PM
 
Originally Posted by ort888
When I was in line, I would say that about a 3rd of the people waiting where parents. Some with their kids and some without.
I think a whole lot of those "parents" were really manchildren and womanchildren.
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Link
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Nov 23, 2005, 12:40 AM
 
Dare I say it, but I don't see anything at all wrong with it. So the parents feel their kids should have a 360 or whatever, in turn their kids will probably do the same when they have their own kids.

If I'm privileged enough to be able to do that, I'll be quite happy

The controlled availability thing is a bit of a game MS is playing though, it's pretty obvious too.
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gururafiki
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Nov 23, 2005, 01:56 AM
 
If Microsoft is slowing production, couldn't that hurt them?
     
Link
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Nov 23, 2005, 04:57 AM
 
Heck no! With supply and demand, these things should hit $1000 on ebay pretty soon if they haven't already.

I spoke too soon, there's actually a few on ebay approaching $1000 as I write this.

http://cgi.ebay.com/Xbox-360-With-2-...QQcmdZViewItem

Whoever buys that needs a psychologist.

http://cgi.ebay.com/XBOX-360-PREMIUM...QQcmdZViewItem

Yep. $1025. HAAHA
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Nov 23, 2005, 05:37 AM
 
I saw the dude on TV who was first to get his xbox, sold to him by Bill Gates himself, and the dude looked just like Bill Gates, it was scary!
     
TailsToo
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Nov 23, 2005, 09:54 AM
 
I'm sticking with my GameCube.
     
Maflynn
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Nov 24, 2005, 08:59 AM
 
I just read this on msnbc It just confirms my opinion that people have a skewed perspective of what's important.

While I can see (maybe undstand their anger) at the manager doing his own thing, I cannot see it degenerating into a mosh pit or on the other side of it waiting 12 hours for a game console. Especially when they will be stacked wall to ceiling in January. What's another month (and a week) for that.
     
   
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