Nintendo Wii proves relative EBay bargain

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Nintendo Wii proves relative EBay bargain

Console price jumps merely 100 per cent on launch day.

Sunday's launch of Nintendo's Wii console has not generated the media buzz and user frenzy of Sony's PlayStation 3, but the US$250 console has generated a steady stream of e-commerce revenue, according to EBay. 

The online auction firm had logged roughly 6,600 Wii sales 36 hours after the launch, selling at an average price of US$435, a company spokesman told

EBay completed 3,352 sales on Sunday at an average price of US$482, a 93 percent mark-up on the US$249 retail price.

Buyers who waited a day to bid on a Wii found that much better deals were to be had. On Monday morning 3,245 of the consoles had sold for an average price of US$387, a 55 percent mark-up.

The Wii prices stand in stark contrast to those that followed the launch of the PlayStation 3.

About 800 Sony consoles changed hands at an average price of US$2,716 in the first 12 hours after the launch on Friday, providing sellers with at least a 350 percent mark-up based on the US$599 price tag for the most expensive model.

Even on Monday PlayStation 3 systems were selling on EBay at a 125 percent mark-up.

The price differences reflect the buzz surrounding each console's launch. Sony, facing a dramatic production shortfall, shipped only 400,000 PlayStation 3 machines.

Hard-core gamers lined up to purchase the next-gen machine days in advance, although most stores had few units on hand. The resulting frenzy produced riots and even shootings.

The Wii was rolled out with much less fanfare. Nintendo shipped over one million consoles with little incident. The Wii is aimed at the less rabid family and casual user base.

The Wii is slated for a European release on 8 December. The PlayStation 3 European release has been delayed until March 2007.
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