Wii U to be sold at loss

Nintendo confirms new system will be sold below manufacturing costs at launch out of desire to sell console at a "reasonable" price.

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The Wii U will be sold at a loss at launch. Presentation slides from Nintendo's latest financial report were made available today, with president Satoru Iwata saying the company's ambition to sell the system at a "reasonable" price trumped its desire to sell the console in line with manufacturing costs.

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It is not clear how much of a loss Nintendo stands to take by selling the Wii U below cost or when profitability on the console is expected to be achieved.

The Wii U will hit retail in North America on November 18 beginning at $300 for a basic model and scaling to $350 for a deluxe version. Nintendo had previously promised a reasonable price for the Wii U, saying it would not make the same mistake with the 3DS, which launched at $250 before Nintendo slashed the portable's price by about 40 percent to $170.

Yesterday, Nintendo reported its fiscal half-year earnings for the period ended September 30. The company posted revenue of ¥201 billion ($2.5 billion) down 6.8 percent from the 215.7 billion ($2.7 billion) it took in during this time last year. Losses came in at ¥28 billion ($351 million), compared to losses of ¥70.3 ($881 million) this time last year.

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