3DS raw materials cost $101 - Report

UBM TechInsights pegs Nintendo's bill for building glasses-free 3D-enabled handheld at roughly $15 more than the DSi.

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Nintendo's 3DS will carry a $250 sticker price when it goes on sale in the US this Sunday, a figure that represents a $100 premium over the Nintendo DS when it launched in 2004 and a $70 markup from 2009's DSi. As could be expected, the price is indicative of a higher cost of raw materials born by Nintendo to build the unit.

Nintendo has 101 reasons to charge $250 for the 3DS.

Speaking to Eurogamer, UBM TechInsights VP of technical intelligence David Carey offered a "preliminary estimate" of Nintendo's cost for the physical components of the 3DS at about $101 per unit. According to Carey, that figure is about $15 more than what it cost the publisher to build each DSi unit at launch.

Smaller than the DSi, the 3DS features a 3.53-inch 3D-enabled top screen and a 3.02-inch touch-panel bottom screen. Its PICA200 GPU offers a 200MHz standard clock speed, while its battery supports three to five hours per charge for 3DS games, depending on screen-brightness settings. The system also includes a 2.4GHz 802.11 Wi-Fi connector.

The 3DS also supports a bevy of other features, including three cameras, a built-in accelerometer and gyroscope, a new circular analog control nub, and a 2GB SD memory card. As seen in GameSpot's unboxing of the device (below), gamers will also find a docking station, a stylus, and six AR cards used for augmented-reality games.

For a full rundown on what to expect from Nintendo's new system, check out GameSpot's 3DS Launch Center.

Discussion

337 comments
VXXXJesterXXXV
VXXXJesterXXXV

@shafe-man You may be right in this case, but generally speaking consoles do not sell for profit. Maybe handhelds are a bit different, but I've known people who work at retail stores whose discount is at cost, but at cost for consoles, such as PS3 is the same price as what they normally charge. I realize this is a little bit late on the reply...lol

PkGam
PkGam

I knew the system was overpriced from the start. I do want to get one as I'm interested in it, but only when the price drops. Like $200 or less. We are talking about a handheld system here. The 3DS is priced as much as the Wii was when it launched. When a handheld (with less in the technical specs may I add) costs as much as a home console, there's something very wrong about that. I understand that there's development costs they have to get back. But there's just no way I'd pay $250 for a handheld. Especially when they have a much higher chance of being damaged since you take them with you or move them around a lot to play them. Granted that's not likely going to happen with most people, but it's a possibility.

BIG_BOSS_927
BIG_BOSS_927

Nintendo is trying to run a business here, not a soup kitchen!!

HighlyToxic
HighlyToxic

Well somebody's gotta pay for the research and development of the product, keeping the lights on at the offices, the employee's wages, the shipping, the reseller's cut, etc. It's expensive, but it's not completely unreasonable. If you can't afford it, don't buy it. Nintendo's never been known to be cheap.

mastergustavo
mastergustavo

maaaaaan..... if you can´t pay for it(like me) or it´s a little to expensive you can always wait for the price to drop.if for you it´s much imagine for Brazilians that have to pay almost twice what you will pay!!!

ArabrockermanX
ArabrockermanX

@TheTenth10 You forget that unlike Sony and MS Nintendo's business is games they have to make a profit off their consoles. It is a bit over priced it should be more like $200 but I can see their reason for selling it this high.

DarthLefein
DarthLefein

Oh my God, you mean to say they're selling the 3DS at a PROFIT?? Those capitalists..unspeakable point point. Lost of words.

TheTenth10
TheTenth10

250$ for 101$ material cost? all consoles for years have sold at a loss for a long time, yet Nintendo mocks the entire business with these silly prices

maximo
maximo

@punk I just got a 3DS and I have to say its pretty amazing, the 3D is really top notch. You knwo what is really card are the augmented cards athat come with it. Dam amazing technology! I reckon its worht every penny and to be honest with you I would have paid more for it too

johnnybowman
johnnybowman

Factor in the cost of software and programming. Then factor in profit margin

punkdsk8erdude
punkdsk8erdude

ok so $15 more to make it than a DSi, but they are charging us $70 more to purchase it? If they really wanted to secure a total monopoly of the portable market this generation, they should've made it $200 flat. If it was 200 i would've considered getting one. I haven't owned a handheld since GBA SP, after that i kind of grew out of it. Suffice to say there were a number of DS games i wish i couldve experienced, just as already there are a number of 3DS games i want to get my hands on, but $250 is just too much for me.

ddlcpc
ddlcpc

nintendo product never really interested me.. they've some fun product but really outdated....

penpusher
penpusher

@Defy_The_Fallen actually theres more to it than simple material, but i wouldnt worry, give it a year and it'll drop and then the better games will have hit store shelves

Defy_The_Fallen
Defy_The_Fallen

@Darth_Tyrranus Call me what you will, I don't care how much was spent on making, advertising and promoting the console, even if they spent $6,000 dollars on it. To me $250 is steep.

Darth_Tyrranus
Darth_Tyrranus

@Defy_The_Fallen You are the epitome of the ignorant and uninformed reader of this article. As has been stated numerous times here by myself and others, the raw materials cost makes up only a fraction of the cost of the whole product. There are many costs involved in the production of the 3DS, and direct materials is just one of them.

Defy_The_Fallen
Defy_The_Fallen

Thumbs this down if you want but if the raw materials were $101, a $149 "profit" is a bit f***ing steep. I can't buy this console coz its so god damn expensive and its really pissing me off. Sort it out.

El3ctrosis
El3ctrosis

If this article was about a Sony product everyone would be in a agreement and get out the pitchforks. But oh no, we're not allowed to badmouth Nintendo. Think of the children!

kuda001
kuda001

@babugee that was my point they are other costs to be considered, manufacturing cost does not represent the full picture. i was just surprised that some people didn't realize something that obvious especially GS.

KhanhAgE
KhanhAgE

>Kevindudedafa "To every idiot out there. It's not greedy it's business." That sounds like something those fat cat executives on Wall Street would say...

Doric6
Doric6

Why does Gamespot run these stories everytime new hardware releases to try and s**t stur? Yeah it might cost $100 to make one, but then you have to consider how much nintendo payed for: Research and development Manufacturing Marketing Distribution etc etc People never QQ about how apple make you pay double the price for just a logo.

345tom
345tom

If you count the reasearch and development costs it will probably still be a while before a profit is made on each one.

Babugee
Babugee

@kuda001 What about the cost of labor, advertising, and things of that nature? Raw materials =/= Complete product $250 (price) - $101 (raw material cost) =/= a $149 profit

Ugly_Geezer
Ugly_Geezer

Come on GS, you really think there's a story here. All electronics are hugely marked up. Will you be running a story about Apple/Sony and other manufacturers soon? Or just leave it at this, then have a go at the kids on your forums when they start fighting system wars, forgetting the fact you often stoke these immature fires?

dawnofhero
dawnofhero

@deathblow3 I don't mind having to choose between 4 models of DS, but I think that it's ridiculous how Nintendo released the DSiXL and then two months later showed off the 3DS at E3. To me that's a bit overwhelming. The same goes for the PSPs. You have the 1000, 2000/slim, 3000, and go models. Honestly, I understand the need to improve technology over the years, but still! Give us a product and then keep it there for a couple of years to let it mature and breathe.

Trifork89
Trifork89

@Travis281... So basically, you're saying that because Sony isn't smart enough to release their systems at a profit for them because they always have to be at the cutting edge of technology and take the kitchen sink approach to adding tons of features into their products, Nintendo and everyone else should do the same? and lose money when they release their consoles because that's what Sony and Microsoft does? That doesn't make any bloody sense man.

kuda001
kuda001

There is a lot more to it than just '$250 (price) - $101 (cost) = $149 (profit)', you should know that Gamespot.

FredWallace18
FredWallace18

Since the cost of copper and plastic is essentially nothing, I assume that this is the component cost, despite the raving of people accusing others of being dumb for not understanding "raw materials." I can't seem to find to original source of this, though, so until then... Also, whatever. So it costs them $101. You know how much this would cost any of us? Nothing, 'cause we can't make it.

steveguttenberg
steveguttenberg

It would have killed their profit to put in that right analog stick, wouldn't it?

wookie560
wookie560

@ Travis281 Sony and Xbox can handle losses from their consoles since they have other branches such as Bravia and windows making their money for them. What does Nintendo have?

Venge-VS
Venge-VS

@riariases You only read the Marxist Economics part of the quote. Perhaps I should have put the emphasis on the specific industries part of the quote. The specific industries it is referring to includes electronic companies which also include gaming hardware. These companies use electronic components that are already created, and refer to them as raw materials. You're not wrong in what you think "Raw Material" is, but you've failed to understand the meaning of raw materials in this specific context. I've gave a reference (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Raw_Materials) that explained my point. Proof of your point is not typing in "raw materials" in google image search. I can type in "ball" and it will pull up soccer balls, footballs, basketballs, etc.. Yet ball can sometimes be used to refer to a formal party. Open your mind and understand that there are multiple meanings to the same words.

soulreaper-4
soulreaper-4

Hey losers! learn to read, the dude said preliminary. This is not official and he said RAW MATERIAL. Google raw material to learn what it is.

zaiwen
zaiwen

Parts - $101 Nintendo brand -$100 Greed kicks in -$49

blackace
blackace

Talk about a markup. So does that mean we can expect a price cut by X-Mas? lol!! They could have sold this for $200 and still made a decent profit. I think Sony's NGP probably cost over $200 to actually manufacture. I doubt they will sell it for less then $300.

jellyman68
jellyman68

Oh my God, you mean to say they're selling the 3DS at a PROFIT?? Those monsters.

tagman90
tagman90

Hey guess what !?!?! A reasonable price is whatever the market will pay for it on a non-essential good like the 3DS. If you don't like the price, don't buy it. If enough people in the market do that, then Nintendo will see it as in their interest to lower the price, until then they'll sell what they have available for what people are willing to pay.

BlackWaltz_No_3
BlackWaltz_No_3

They do have to take in account their overheads, payments for advertisements, salary for employees, packaging and shipping fees, and money for future investment. Everyone has to make profits or their company would just sink to the sea. We wouldn't like that wouldn't we?

bizuit
bizuit

@hyttenhoof, just because the standard doesn't mean everyone does it, also do you not understand this is raw materials and not everything involved? Also, when the PS3 and 360 came out they were 499 and 399 respectivly, if you try and make a profit off each console out the gate you are going to have to sell them at 600-700 bucks a piece, to make a profit of the 3DS you sell it at 250 bucks a piece and if you sell it for cheaper you are going to take a loss which makes no sense at all when people can afford 250 bucks. Average cost for for a DS game is 29.99(which means you Nintendo doesn't make as much per game like Sony and Microsoft does), compared to a PS3 and 360 game at 59.99, makes no sense to sell a 3DS for 150 bucks and take a loss when you don't take home as much on each game sale as other consoles.

bizuit
bizuit

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

deathblow3
deathblow3

nintendo products where cheap because it was last gen tech under powered nothing real costly. buy a 3d tv 1080i 240hrz it is way more expensive than the non 3d version (newer tech). this is the first time in a while nintendo has used any new or current tech. yes the wii tech is advanced but it is not new. glasses free 3d is new the are still trying to perfect it as it has an issue with angles. they cant pad a device with a whole bunch of tech just to beat at the competitors. this is what sony does 1st gen ps3 where under priced and they loss money on them so they took out all the bells and whistle to make it cheaper and cut some of the loss.

liam82517
liam82517

@mattcake Most people dont(or wont) understand that. It was the same when kinect was released and everyone went nuts at how cheap it was to make and wouldnt allow for the R&D costs to be a factor in the price. I would say the reason wii has kept its price is because people were still buying it. Why drop your price if your console is still selling well? Only reason you see price drops is when sales start to dry up.

mattcake
mattcake

Nintendo hardware is always overpriced and maintains that price amazingly too. The wii must cost the same as a mars bar to make now yet the price is still massively higher % wise of its original, than say the xbox. Having said that, these "raw materials" things are very misleading. Youre also paying for all the research that went into creating the technology. A book only costs a few pence to make, but the research that went into writing it could cost millions, so should the book only cost a few pence? No :)

Drag00nknight
Drag00nknight

Also, Look at the Wii, when it was released it was $250. It just recently, within the past year, went down to $200. It was because of Nintendo's structured release program that they were able to keep the prices high and keep demand for the system up so high. So in retrospect again the pricing may again seem high but it accounts for the rising prices of "everything". Now we can argue politics, pricing, unfairness, or whatever you want to call it,but fact of the matter is, Nintendo isn't going to change it until they think they are going to need to.

Drag00nknight
Drag00nknight

To get down to brass tacks, what isn't overpriced now a days? I mean if you really look at it everything we buy is either inflated, or overpriced because of the market. I mean how many people really care that a piece of Nintendo hardware is going with their marketing directors and saying that the price is fair. I mean I'll go back to what I said before. Its an industry first. So naturally it will be higher priced. Once the marketing team deems that the price has run its course they will obviously lower it or offer a bundle for the same price. Same thing happens with every system. Also look at the Company, not much has changed over the years, yes people have retired or something but as @haffiny said how often do you see press releases saying Nintendo let-go or fired so many people? Rarely if ever. They are a sound Company that does business in a fair manner and just so happen to come out with industry leading technology. I mean yeah they don't have the resolution of PSP or the Speed of it but they do offer things that Sony cannot or will not offer without their products costing close to $300-$400. So in lesser words people should just stop whining about a pricing of $250. It is in essence a perfectly fair price for a piece of hardware that is just in the infant stages of becoming the next huge thing from Nintendo.

IceJester45
IceJester45

@zzamaro, I am serious. And, no, Nintendo sure as hell was not a humble company--especially when Yamauchi was in charge. I think you're being naive. Personally, I don't expect companies to be my friend; I expect them to give me what's advertised. Which is good, because Nintendo has never demonstrated any unusual loyalty to me as a consumer. As far as supposedly doing things differently goes, Nintendo doesn't need to issue a memo or make a public statement to convince me that they estimated demand when determining MSRP for their consoles 10 or 20 years ago. Iwata was just stating publicly the obvious. I expected nothing less. "Overpricing" is a relative thing. Many people thought the Nintendo DS was overpriced when it came out. You don't remember the complaints on the forums from people angry that the new Nintendo handheld was $50 more than the last? I don't think the 3DS is particularly overpriced, given what it does.

riariases
riariases

Its pretty apparent that if the 3DS's Ram, CPU and GPU already bring the 3DS cost up to $105-$120, the "Raw Materials" this article is talking about is definitely the material costs(silicon plastic, cobalt glass, copper, gold, etc).

riariases
riariases

@soulreaper-4 Thats the same message i've been trying to get across. "Raw Materials" and "Parts and Hardware" are very different things. The CPU chip would be "Parts and Hardware". The 20g of silicon plastic, 5g of gold(or whatever materials make a CPU chip) which is used to make that CPU chip is what the "Raw Materials" are. If you go by "Parts and Hardware", the 3DS is much more. A 96MB mobile Ram chip would cost $15-$30(depending what brand). The 1048 0H ARM 11 CPU costs about $30, and the 3DS has dual CPU(two 1048 0H ARM 11's) so thats another $60. And the 3DS also has a PICA200 GPU which costs about $30. So just by naming 3 "Parts and Hardware"(four if you coun't the dual CPUs) the 3DS has already racked up a $105-$120 price point, and thats without the two screen costs, the other chip costs, SD drive, cartridge drive and everything else thats put into it.

zzamaro
zzamaro

@IceJester45 Not important? That's it. You aren't serious anymore. That IS really important. Nintendo is NOT doing what they have done before, they have changed. This will be the first time we are getting screwed because of their arrogance, because they think they just can do it and throw our money away that easy, even it was 600$. They have NEVER overpriced their products before. Their handhelds were cheap(under 100), their gamecube was the first console to be under 100$ last gen, the reason: they always cared for the consumer. And even if their products were cheap, they got a lot of profit. It seems you don't really know Nintendo. Nintendo used to be a humble company. That simple.

japanesegoth
japanesegoth

that seems like a bit much considering how nintendo usually prices stuff. hmm...i will probably wait. maybe they forgot why the psp and ps3 didn't do that great at launch.

IceJester45
IceJester45

@zzamaro, I read the Iwata quote a long time ago. I'm not ignoring it. I just don't think it's important, or shocking, or sad, or anger-inducing, or anything new or special. Nintendo is doing what it has always done.