Harvey Norman back-flips on Wii stance

By Craig Zammit

SYDNEY: Harvey Norman has flip-flopped on its anti-Nintendo stance, revealing it would like to pursue a working relationship with the gaming giant for the first time in four years, negotiating to stock the highly-successful Wii console for the first time.

“We’d like to have a trading relationship with Nintendo, but we’re waiting for them to have better stock availability,” Harvey Norman computers and entertainment general manager, Rutland Smith, told AustralianIT News.

Nintendo claims to have resolved all delivery problems and is currently in talks with Harvey Norman concerning the record-breaking Wii console, which employs a unique control mechanism allowing users to control the on-screen character through hand motions in 3D space.

“I don’t think stock is the only hurdle at the moment, just logistical issues that come down to sales and trading terms,” Nintendo spokesman, Vispi Bhopti, said.

“If [the Wii] is not in one particular retailer but is in 99 per cent of other retailers, I don’t think it’s going to make a big dent in the long-term business model,” Bhopti said.

Gaming retailers across the country can’t heap enough praise on the Nintendo Wii, with one EB Games employee telling Current.com.au that in terms of sales “the Wii is killing the other consoles – we just can’t get enough of them”.

With both of Wii’s competitors, the Xbox 360 and the PlayStation 3, lining up a plethora of blockbuster games releases in the coming months, spearheaded by the Xbox 360’s highly-anticipated Halo 3 release on 25 September, retailers will be hoping for a gaming boom.

However with the leading seller of Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 consoles in Australia, Harvey Norman, now looking into stocking the Wii, it’s safe to say that the gaming war may have only just begun.

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