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Thursday, March 15, 2007

Rein Agrees With Me

He [Mark Rein] also took a shot at some of the system's critics regarding the supply and demand issue.

"So wait, if they don't have enough machines in stores, that's a bad thing? If they do have enough machines, that's a bad thing? Pick one!"

Mr. Rein, if there aren't enough systems at launch and they cause craziness, that's bad. If Phil Harrison says they are completely sold out everywhere and they aren't, that's bad, or at the very least misleading. Situations can change like that.
-- Mark Rein: PS3 "the one to beat" - Kotaku

I'm not dissing Kotaku here, since this is a feint most every blog and site out there is doing right now ... but it's still a feint. It's a copout. Using Tretton's stupid exclamation (and it was Tretton, not Harrison, IIRC) as a defense for essentially using contradictory arguments to attack Sony was just silly (on many people's behalf).

When I poked someone about this recently (I won't name names), they insisted that the "shelf theory" was sound even in the face of logic. Likewise, they agreed that Microsoft's "shelved units" were equally a symbol of 360 demand ... but for some reason that wasn't a focus.

If the NPD sales number plummet or stumble, I'll buy into it. I'm not accepting counting shelf stock as any reasonable measure of demand.


Unknown said...

The shelf theory is interesting, but I'm not sure how well it works to judge demand. If a store only gets 4 units a month and they sell out within an hour, that still only tells us the demand is at least 4 units a month, which isn't great.

I find it interesting that my Best Buy doesn't even have a shelf tag for the Wii-- instead they've got a cardboard display for a couple of copies of some video game magazine. They've got shelf tags for the controllers, which have never been in stock when I've been there. My inside contact tells me that Wiis haven't even made it on the shelf-- they sell the morning they arrive within 15 minutes of opening.

Meanwhile, my KMart, which has one of the most picked over video game sections I've seen, has 2 PS3s in the case, waiting to go.

Josh said...

Yeah, I kinda imagined the shelf theory like trying to determine two numbers being divided by looking at the remainder.

Is PS3 demand softer than Wii demand? Yeah, I'm sure it is - but I don't need to count units on a shelf to determine that. Course, Nintendo also got caught behind the curve with supply - beating estimates months in a row. So, they haven't been able to predict and ramp up the way Sony has.

Either way, when I want to buy something - I'd like for it be on a shelf :) I don't want to go hunting for it.