With the recent Nintendo Switch launch , more and more people are discussing about its features, and most of all, on its price. But are console prices nowadays in general really that high? From the folks at CupoNation Singapore they compared the prices of the most popular video consoles during the last 30 years, taking inflation into account to illustrate the evolution of their actual costs.
Good news for console gamers: consoles are getting cheaper overtime
It is now on average 16% cheaper to buy a console than back in the 90s: The average cost of the two most popular consoles in 1987, the NES and the Sega Master System was $420, while the cost of the two most popular consoles nowadays, the PlayStation 4 Pro and the Xbox One S is an average of $350.
Same price strategy for most of the players
On the course of the last 30 years, prices get lower despite fluctuations. If we take for example the first and last released consoles of PlayStation and Xbox, prices have been reduced by 15% and 25% respectively. We also noticed that usually there is a peak in the price before the big drop: all companies except for Nintendo have had a similar pattern in their pricing policy, reaching a peak and then reducing the price considerably.
Nintendo does not follow the pricing trends
Nintendo has historically been the cheapest among the 4 manufacturers, but does not follow the patterns that we observed in the rest of the companies. It has had an overall steady pricing policy with no peaks. There has been only one very big drop with the launch of NES mini, which is not really taken into account since its features were different than the rest of the consoles. The price then rose back up to $299 for the upcoming Nintendo Switch console, which has the same price as the Xbox One S, but with different characteristics and less third party games.
An infographic to summarize it all
About the study
CupoNation Singapore compared the official launch prices of video gaming consoles starting with the NES in 1987 until the Nintendo Switch expected to be launched in March 2017. Prices are given in USD, taking inflation into account. The companies CupoNation Singapore took into account for this study are SEGA, Nintendo, Sony (PlayStation) and Microsoft (Xbox).