When I was a manager at GS in 2007 Nintendo would purposely send us 2-4 units at a time and a space of about 2-4 weeks in between shipments. No way in hell was it that hard to manufacture a overclocked Gamecube 360's were selling like crazy and we still had a bunch stacked in the back room and that was a state of the art machine. So yes Nintendo does it. It's good business. Create a high demand with low supply. It's a tried and true tactic. Switch is popular yes but Nintendo wants the hype to ride for not just popular but creating even more demand for a double edge sword.
2 to 4 units does seem like very few but if you've got a limited amount and are trying to spread it out across the thousands of stores across the US. I can see it as possible that your store got so few units.
It is possible that they purposely fell short of demand at launch. That creates lots of buzz. It is also possible that they're still affected by that intended shortage at launch. At this point though, they are certainly trying to get as many units as possible into retail channels. There is no hype to build right now, just sales to lose.
There is a reasonable chance that they will purposely be short at the beginning of the holiday season. I think it would be smart to sell out early on Black Friday weekend in the US. That gets you lots of mentions in the news. But, you need to stock all retailers back up by the next weekend, so that you don't lose many sales to XB or PS. Maybe keep it tight for one more week, but have enough supply that parents figure they'll be able to find one before xmas. Then, make sure there is plenty of supply for the last 3 weekends before xmas, so everyone that wants one can get it.
I'd argue that Black Friday is definitely a day where they don't want to be undersupplied. You've got tons of busy parents doing their holiday shopping, they don't want to come back another day so if they don't find a Switch many of them with go with an alternative, be it another console or something else entirely (to the dismay of their kid).
Not with the Switch. But I do believe with 100% certainty they did with the Wii U and Amiibo
Did the Wii U ever have stock issues?
Do you ACTUALLY believe in the holocaust?
Well do you?
To be clear, I'm not talking about the Nazis being responsible for the death of millions of jews, I'm talking about people who really think Adolf Hitler was a time traveller from planet Melmac who personally killed all the jews while wearing a pink and yellow striped mini-skirt and a giant penis-shaped tampon on his head, just because he wanted international newspapers to publish articles about him.
So there you have it: the holocaust (that is, as per my extremely limited definition) didn't happen, only an insane person would believe something that crazy.
Seriously: you're basically trying to prove that there is no "artificial Switch shortage" by limiting "artificial Switch shortage" to a very narrow and indeed rather unrealistic definition.
"Setting aside units for big release weeks" would obviously already be a case of storing "Switch console somewhere and not shipping them to retailers who a begging for supply". Furthermore, the idea that a manufacturer would drive production at the maximum and store all the excess units in warehouses doesn't make much sense to me; a manufacturer who indeed wanted to use an artificial scarcity strategy would probably rather not drive production at the possible maximum instead.
And to those suggesting that artificial shortages wouldn't possibly make any sense, because of "birds in the hand" etc.: "Artifical scarcity" exists, intentionally keeping supply below demand is a well-known strategy in marketing etc. If you don't see any possible reasons why a sane manufacturer would possibly do something like that, chances are you just don't know that much about economics.
I'm not saying that Nintendo is indeed (still) intentionally keeping supply below demand (I neither know nor really care), but it's not that hard to think of possible reasons why Nintendo might consider doing so for a limited period of time.
Your analogy is terrible but I get your point nontheless. I thought about leaving it open ended but it wouldn't have given my the answers I was looking for. In the end, my proposition wasn't that extreme since they are users who responded affirmatively to it and provided their own reasoning for it which is what I was interested in.
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