GameCube price reduced in Australia

In response to the massive Xbox price reduction last week, Nintendo Australia has cut the price of its competing system, the unreleased GameCube.

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The Nintendo GameCube price has been cut in Australia by 17 percent to a new recommended retail price of AU $329 ($175). The cut comes only days after Microsoft's surprise reduction of the Xbox price to $399 ($215) last week.

The cut comes before the system has even hit retail shelves. It will be launching in Australia on May 17. This preemptive cut may impact the margins that retailers will gain on existing stocks of the machine. Nintendo executives were quick to point to preorders from dedicated customers.

"Consumers have already reserved and prepaid a deposit for thousands of Nintendo GameCubes nationally. Based on existing reserved copies, and given that we are three weeks until our launch and that preorders rise exponentially, we expect preorders of 10,000 or more by May 17," said David Yarnton, director of sales and marketing, Nintendo Australia.

Nintendo has committed 50,000 GameCubes to Australia for the launch month. For 2002, it has committed an estimated 200,000. More than 20 software titles will be available at launch time, and by the end of the year, more than 50 titles will be available.

This latest cut sees the Sony PlayStation 2 at AU$499 ($270), which is significantly more expensive than the Xbox and GameCube. Sony is expected to reduce its Australian price in response to the moves from Microsoft and Nintendo.

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