Wii shortages could continue for second Christmas - analyst
Shortages of the Wii are set to continue throughout 2007 according to analysts, with Nintendo potentially missing key sales during the Christmas season for a second year running.
Shortages of the Wii are set to continue throughout 2007 according to analysts at Lazard Capital Markets, with Nintendo potentially missing key sales during the Christmas season for a second year running.
And while the company increases production of the console to 1.5 million units a month, some analysts have begun to question the long-term appeal of the Wii amongst the casual gaming audience.
"Demand still appears to exceed supply, and we believe that shortages could persist through the remainder of the year, including the key holiday period," commented Lazard's Colin Sebastian.
For some analysts, the Wii may begin to lose favour with the casual consumer, and in the face of next-generation gaming it could also look out of date as the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 continue to push the envelope with graphical and technological advances.
"Its appeal is primarily to casual gamers, and there's a serious question about how long casual gamers will stay engaged with the platform," commented Van Baker, technology analyst at Gartner Inc, reports the LA Times.
"It wouldn't be surprising to see them lose interest after a relatively short amount of time," he said.
"The Wii in a couple of years is going to look like old technology with low resolution [and] slow performance. People may not be accepting of that," he added.
However, the Wii is still receiving praise from consumers themselves, with a recent poll by Frank N. Magid Associates revealing that 31 per cent of Wii owners expect to still be playing the console a year from now, compared to 21 per cent of Xbox 360 owners.
And the most recent US sales figures from NPD revealed that the console is trouncing its competitors at retail, with 360,000 units sold in April, compared to 82,000 PlayStation 3's and 174,000 Xbox 360's.