The Tech Herald

Riccitiello: Wii console sales would 'explode' if priced at $99

by Steven Mostyn - Dec 20 2010, 15:55

Down but not out, according to EA boss. Image: Nintendo.

After enjoying several years of phenomenal success with its demographic-busting Wii home console, retail sales attributed to Nintendo’s motion-sensing platform have been steadily flagging since 2009.

However, despite the apparent drop off, Electronic Arts (EA) boss John Riccitiello believes Nintendo can restore the Wii’s momentum if it moves to drop the console’s price point below $100 USD.

“I would say [Nintendo] did exceptionally well in ’07 and ’08, [but] started tapering in ’09 and ’10,” offered Riccitiello in an IndustryGamers report. “I think if they were to price [the Wii] down to $99, they would explode.”

EA’s head honcho also said Nintendo sales would likely experience an upturn if the company would improve support for third-party software—one of the most persistent software criticisms leveled at the Japanese giant.

“If they were to find ways to promote third-party content better, as opposed to first-party content, and would hit pricing, I think the platform would see new life,” he said.

Dwindling interest in the Wii has been magnified over the last few months since market rivals Sony and Microsoft launched motion-sensing control systems of their own in the form of the PlayStation Move and Microsoft Kinect.

According to Amazon prices, the Nintendo Wii (with Wii Sports and Wii Sports Resort) costs $199 USD—a price matched by the 4GB variant of Microsoft’s Xbox 360 console. Sony’s 160GB PlayStation 3 currently costs $299 USD.

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