Over the last few months, the Nintendo Switch has been pretty difficult to get hold of in some countries, as demand is constantly outstripping availability. In some cases, the Switch will go out of stock the same day retailers get a fresh shipment in. This has led to some claiming that Nintendo is intentionally withholding stock. However, in an interview this week, the company wanted to put that particular rumour to bed.
Speaking with Ars Technica this week, Nintendo’s Charlie Scibetta said that the stock shortages “are definitely not intentional” adding that the company is making units as fast as it can in order to support all of the software releasing. However, the company does admit to underestimating demand.
“It’s definitely not intentional in terms of shorting the market. We’re making it as fast as we can. We want to get as many units out as we can to support all the software that’s coming out right now… our job really is to get it out as quick as we can, especially for this holiday because we want to have units on shelves to support Super Mario Odyssey. We anticipated there was going to be demand for it, but the demand has been even higher than we thought.”
Scibetta then went on to say that while the company is planning to have ten million Switch units shipped by March 2018, Nintendo is in a position now “where as quick as it’s going into retail outlets, it’s being snapped up”.
One thing worth pointing out is that Nintendo can’t just drastically increase the number of Switch consoles it can make in a month. It all depends on part availability and as we reported yesterday, there is a continuous DRAM and NAND chip shortage going on right now, which is putting the squeeze on a lot of hardware companies, whether they be producers of PC hardware, smartphones or consoles.
Third-party companies are watching the Nintendo Switch keenly right now. The quicker the company get get units sold and out the door, the more likely developers are going to jump on board early. If Nintendo really was hampering stock on purpose, it would only be shooting itself in the foot in the long run. After all, the bulk of a console’s profits are made via software and services, not necessarily hardware.