updated 11:15 pm EDT, Thu August 4, 2011
Price cut said to be necessary move
Nintendo CEO Satoru Iwata has released a letter of apology to customers who purchased the company's 3DS handheld before the price was drastically cut. The executive notes that his company is "all too keenly aware" that the price reduction, which was announced less than six months after the device arrived on the market, may have left early adopters feeling betrayed and critical of the decision.
"This unprecedented timing for a price cut is because the situation has changed greatly since we originally launched the 3DS," Iwata wrote. "We decided it was necessary to take this drastic step in order to ensure that large numbers of users will continue to enjoy the 3DS in the future."
The CEO argues that the price drop was necessary to bolster confidence among retailers and content creators. The move was said to be designed to help the 3DS "gain popularity, acquire a wide range of software, and eventually create the product cycle necessary for everyone to be satisfied with the system."
The 3DS arrived with a $249 price tag, which will be dropped to $169 at the end of next week. The company has not announced any refund program for early buyers, however the 830,000 customers who paid full price will be able to download 20 free games after they sign up for the Ambassador program. The promotion will also enable participants to download 10 NES Virtual Console games at no charge before the titles are made available to the general public.
"Those customers who purchased the 3DS at the very beginning are extremely important to us," Iwata added. "We know that there is nothing we can do to completely make up for the feeling that you are being punished for buying the system early." [via Giant Bomb]