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Should Companies Offer 'refunds' After Price-cuts?

Mercedes

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So, just a little question me and a few friends were discussing I thought would be interesting.

This was all spurred on by the news of Microsoft's price-cut of the Xbox One and the comments which ensued on CVG. So for context, the Xbox One released in November last year, but is receiving a price-cut right now, at least in the UK, of £40. Which is good! The Wii U also received a price-cut, albeit later, and that was good too! And pretty much every console ever created has, at one point, received an official price-cut. It's just kind of what happens, and you'd think people would be happy about things going lower in price.

But, what about people who bought it for full-price. On the CVG thread people were annoyed that they bought it full-price, which I suppose is understandeable, the amount of games I've bought on Steam for it to then go on sale a few days after! But, do you think companies should offer them some kind of store credit or something to make up for it, that they missed the price-cut? Do you think they are obligated to do so? Is there a sort of time-frame of a price-cut where they should do it? Or do you think people should just accept the price they paid and companies shouldn't do anything about it?

Discuss!
 

キラ

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It is kinda bogus that they would have a price cut only 3 months after its release.
But, on the other hand, the people who purchased it wanted it enough to buy it at that price. They obviously were fine enough with buying it at that price.

I'm kinda on the fence on this.
 

Salem

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I don't think they are obligated to offer refunds, but if they did, it will be nice of them.:)
 

JuicieJ

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No. It's the price you pay for being an early adopter. This kind of stuff has happened with consoles for a long time now, so I can't help but wonder why people are only starting to ***** about it en masse now. Probably because it's the Xbone? *shrugs*
 

Justac00lguy

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Simple, no.

When you purchase an item--or in this case, a console--you're obliged to pay a certain amount of money. Refunds aren't subject to chances in the market (i.e price cuts). Refunds in this case should only be allowed if the item is faulty, or you decide that you no longer want the item - this is only acceptable if you have the receipt and the product is as it was bought.

The market changes due to a number of factors: competition and/or others stakeholders, supply&demand and so on. You can't really predict market changes (well you can if you're an expert), so you have to accept such changes and move on. If you bought something for £200 and now it's £150 then that's simply that; you can't do nothing about it.

All in all I would disagree with this, it would cost the business money and it's just against how the real world market works.
 

Heroine of Time

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Take a guess.
That being said, it wouldn't hurt Microsoft to do what Nintendo did and offer people who had the console before the drop some form of free reward. Early 3DS owners got a classic game bundle (or something), why not hand out the Microsoftians a few free DLC packs or an old 360 download?
This is what I was going to say.

Companies shouldn't have to give refunds. Although it would be absolutely wonderful if a company actually did do that, it shouldn't be expected. Prices always go down on consoles, so I don't know why anyone would expect otherwise. Of course, they have a right to be angry -- especially in this case, where the console has only been out for such a short time -- but they can't expect a refund. (I'd be really annoyed if I had an XBox One right now too, haha.)

Nintendo definitely made the right decision when they did the Ambassador Program for the 3DS. I bought my 3DS early and have thus missed out on price drops and limited edition Zelda bundles that I would have loved to have. But I've been able to justify it to myself because I have 20 free games, 10 of which are still not available to most people on the 3DS. It really made me feel like a valued customer, haha. That's a far better way to go than a flat-out refund.
 

Turo602

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I don't see why they should be offered anything. The only reason I could think of for a price cut, especially this early, is to push more sales after becoming stagnant. So how does it make sense to offer a refund when the goal is to make more money? If the console is struggling that bad, let them be fortunate enough to have made the money they did at launch. Feeling like an @ss for having paid full price was your choice as a consumer, deal with it you greedy [email protected]
 
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No if those people wanted their consoles for a lower price they should have waited for the price to go down, but they didn't that was their choice and no refund is owed to them and they shouldn't get one.
 

misskitten

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People have the right to be annoyed in the same way people who arrive to the bus stop late only to see their bus pulling out right in front of them have the right to be annoyed. It sucks, but that's simply how the world works and no amount of whining and demands is going to change that.

Yes, I say whining, because a big part of being a consumer is knowing that the earlier you buy a product (especially in terms of entertainment, although it also applies to many other categories of products), the more you will have to pay. It's a direct trade-off for getting the product sooner and having more time to enjoy it.

There are things that I buy on release (or close to release), knowing full well that if I just waited a little while I'd be able to get the exact same product for much less money. Yet, I still shell out the full price, because I'd rather spend the extra bucks now rather than spend more time waiting. And sure, I will sometimes see things I own, like movies, box sets, games and so forth and have a bit of an "aw man" moment, thinking about how if I'd just waited I could have saved so much money - but then when I think about how much I have enjoyed having it for however long I would have had to waited - I realize that if I was given the option to go back and do it over - I'd still choose buying it sooner.

Then there are times where I choose to wait it out, knowing that the price will drop eventually. Those are the things I don't "need" to have immediately and the prospect of saving money is just more appealing to me. I will wait it out until the price drops within a range that I find more acceptable, look out for sales and so forth. Sometimes I will have to wait for quite a while before it happens, other times I luck out and I can get the best out of both worlds.

I'm sorry, but refunding customers because they bought your product before a price drop is not a good idea. If Microsoft wants to soften the blow for customers who bought their systems not anticipating a price drop in quite som time, then it's a much better idea to do something akin to what Nintendo did with the Ambassador programme. Not that I think they have anything to make up for (at least not in terms of making a business decision to level their price with their main competitor - definitely not defending Microsoft in the many other crappy moves they have done in the past).

In this case, though, I really do think it's the customers who are being unreasonable. They knew that at some point the console they bought full price, would become cheaper, and by buying the console full price, they as consumers said that they found the price to be fair for the product. They have the right to be annoyed that they could have saved some money if they had waited a bit longer - but none of them had to buy the console at launch or full price - they made a conscious choice to pay for the privilege of not having to wait longer. Simple as that.
 

Viral Maze

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That being said, it wouldn't hurt Microsoft to do what Nintendo did and offer people who had the console before the drop some form of free reward. Early 3DS owners got a classic game bundle (or something), why not hand out the Microsoftians a few free DLC packs or an old 360 download?
The most I see with Day 1 adopters of the XBone is your controller saying Day 1, and getting a fancy achievement for your gamertag.

I agree that day 1, or early adopters should be rewarded something tangible for their loyalty, and it would boost sales with winning over people who are on the fence, but I don't see these big companies giving refunds after price-cuts.
 

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