Format-holders are damned if they do and damned if they don’t.
Supply enough product for launch, just enough to satisfy day one with some overspill, then you’re branded a so-so hit. Or a borderline failure.
Don’t supply enough product, and you aren’t working hard enough, over-inflating demand, or simply cocked up your manufacturing.
We’ve heard a fair bit of off-the-record grumbling over the last few days about Kinect allocations. Some say a few stores are getting just one unit each, a stark contrast to what’s obviously going on at the likes of GAME and Asda, where November 10th is effectively the launch of a new console.
But I think you can take Microsoft’s recent comments at face value. Bitch and moan all you like about what happens on day one – I’m sure there isn’t as much stock available as Microsoft wanted, and you bet they have looked after preferred retail partners first. They need those people on side for the long-haul.
So no, I don’t think you can accuse the format holder of mishandling this launch. Excitement for Kinect is high and, if the company keeps playing it right, we could be in for a Wii-like boom that we haven’t seen for some time.