Nintendo has been dealing with stock shortages of the Nintendo Switch since release. The console dropped on March 3rd worldwide and hasn't been in stock in most North American retail outlets since. Well, here's what Nintendo is doing to handle Switch shortages.
According to the Wall Street Journal [via Polygon] Nintendo is reacting to the surge of sales they've received for the Nintendo Switch by promising to double the production quotas they had originally set for 2017, which was originally set for 8 million SKUs set to be manufactured and delivered through distributors, but they're now aiming for 16 million SKUs by the end of 2017.
The Wall Street Journal estimates that Nintendo is gunning to sell-through around 10 million SKUs for the year, which would be extremely impressive for them if that were the case. The lifetime sales for the Wii U was just over 13 million, so they would be aiming to move around 80% of the Wii U's total lifetime install base within the first year of the Switch's release.
This is a vast departure from what Superdata Research had estimated for the Switch, claiming that Nintendo's new console was only going to move about 5 million SKUs in total for 2017. Nintendo had already moved 1.5 million units -- via sell-through -- within the first week of its release on March 3rd. So, many analysts are already expecting that number to have greatly risen now that we're heading into the third week of its release on the market and the console is still completely and entirely sold out at all North American retailers according to Now In Stock.
Scalpers, however, are currently making a killing by selling the Nintendo Switch units in various forms through the eBay auction site. A majority of the units are selling on average between $420 and $500 just for the basic gray unit, which is up to $200 more of a markup than what the console costs at the standard retail outlet.
Some people have also gone a step further and have been importing their consoles from countries where stock is still available. Nintendo hasn't been moving quite as many units in the U.K., compared to France, Japan and the United States, so some people have commented that they have imported a Nintendo Switch from a U.K., retailer and bit the bullet with shipping costs. They've also had to buy electrical outlet converters to run the PAL version of the system.
Thankfully, Nintendo decided to make the Nintendo Switch region free, so you can use cartridges and games from various regions on your Nintendo Switch no matter where you're located in the world.
Now that Nintendo has ramped up production, it's likely that we can expect to see a surge of units made available at retailers in the coming weeks. For those of you who haven't been patient and heading to the scalpers, just hold off for now because stock will be coming back in soon.
In a way the stock shortages help stave off one of the more obvious issues plaguing the Nintendo Switch: a sparse launch line-up of games.
As the stock begins to pour back into retailers worldwide, additional games will be making their way to the system, including games like Mario Kart 8: Deluxe, which is due to drop at the end of next month.