Retailers Paywall Consoles, GPU's, Black Friday Deals Behind Expensive Annual Passes

DPI

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BestBuy, Walmart, GameStop, Target. Their hands are contractually tied from selling high-demand consoles and GPU's at above MSRP. Yet they are very aware how much more those products are reselling for at street value. They've had enough of standing idly by while human filth dances out of their stores with consoles and GPU's under each arm, destined for eBay and Offerup. Now it's about revenge. Their solution? Creating a door fee for the privilege of buying consoles and GPU's you can't buy, and a door fee for Black Friday.

BestBuy has introduced TotalTech for $199/year. Last week's online Playstation 5 drop required it for purchase. The upcoming Halo Edition Xbox drop will also require it.
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Walmart has introduced Walmart+ for $100/year. If you want a shot at Black Friday deals, it'll be required. Expect console drops to give preference to it.
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GameStop has had PowerUp Rewards Pro for some time, but it's less at $14.99/yr. It's been required for some GPU and console combo drops.

Expect Target, Newegg and maybe even Amazon to join the fun and excitement shortly.


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Red Falcon

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See, this is the Corporatism that only megacorps in our dark cyberpunk future can bring to the table. :borg:
How this is legal is hardly beyond me - the politicians who should be making this practice illegal have been bought and paid for, and now it is what it is, so enjoy literally needing to pay again to pay to play.

Oh, but those dirty scalpers, it's all their fault, riiiiight. :whistle:
 

DoubleTap

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A $200 entrance fee is interesting - they could then gate your ability to purchase more than one of a class of product so scalpers would be somewhat throttled.

I suppose scalpers could open multiple accounts if the profit makes it worthwhile but they could add sms verification and make it a hassle.

Will be interesting to watch - I don't think there is anything you can do to make these things easily available to regular people at regular prices when they are worth so much at auction.
 

LukeTbk

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Seem like one of the few possible measure to reduce scalping capability and a way to cash in on demand for stuff that would create some ruffle (and I imagine go against Sony-Microsoft deal) to do it explicitly on the price tag.

How this is legal is hardly beyond me - the politicians who should be making this practice illegal
Would that include making Costco, coop or any other member only purchasing model illegal has well or some specific case that illegal only if you do not require membership for all items ?
 

Red Falcon

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Would that include making Costco, coop or any other member only purchasing model illegal has well or some specific case that illegal only if you do not require membership for all items ?
If we could buy the GPUs and consoles in bulk, it should be very legal, but alas...
 

DPI

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A $200 entrance fee is interesting - they could then gate your ability to purchase more than one of a class of product so scalpers would be somewhat throttled.

I suppose scalpers could open multiple accounts if the profit makes it worthwhile but they could add sms verification and make it a hassle.

Will be interesting to watch - I don't think there is anything you can do to make these things easily available to regular people at regular prices when they are worth so much at auction.
Yep, this definitely isn't an anti scalper maneuver, its just a way for Tim Bestbuy to capture additional margin.

If anything, TotalTech probably helps scalpers, because its creates a barrier for the average person trying to get a single console for themselves or their kid - those people are now looking at a $700+tax total outlay console+membership, but precision-tuned by BestBuy to still be less than a scalper-priced PS5 or Series X.
 
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LukeTbk

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If anything, TotalTech probably helps scalpers, because its a barrier against an average person trying to get a single console for themselves or their kid - those people are now looking at a $700+tax total outlay console+membership, but precision-tuned by BestBuy to still be less than a scalper-priced PS5 or Series X.
1) Does it not reduce scalper margin by a lot
2) Does it not make much harder to buy more than one (and use paid employee to buy for you waiting in line with said margin becoming more out of question)

It create a price barrier to buy your first console (but for people ready to pay scalping price not too high) but arguably an even bigger barrier to buy a second one.

Yep, this definitely isn't an anti scalper maneuver, its just a way for BB to extract or recover an additional margin.
It is mostly a direct make money maneuver, but maybe they think if people are more confident to get a console there instead of elsewhere (or at all) during black friday instead of people being specifically there to buying a console with the goal to resell, that the more regular traffic can also help with secondary sell, if you buy a new console at best buy, higher chance you buy second controllers, games, 4K 120 hz tv, cables and so on there has well, all opportunity lost for each scalper buyer type on what I imagine is a low margin item if they purely sell it without selling the higher margin accessories that come with it.
 

sfsuphysics

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I'm just glad my kid is still young enough that I don't have to worry about disappointing him at Christmas (because I totally would out of principle). I mean last year he really wanted the Elf House lego set, which I already bought months prior as a "fuck it, if we're going to be under lockdown I'm spending a bit more on Christmas decorations" mindset, but other than that eh... he's young enough that he's easy to please as far as entertainment.
 

GoodBoy

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It sounds more like a combination of services... Geek squad, free installation, 24 hour tech support, 2 day shipping, extended return window, up to 2 year extended warranty (probably that return for exchange/refund when outside the mfg warranty thing they always try to sell when you buy something). I see nothing that implies this is required to purchase a Playstation 5 or an Xbox Halo Edition on the Totaltech page, or the respective product pages.

Someone post a screenshot that proves that was the case.
 
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Verge

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It sounds more like a combination of services... Geek squad, free installation, 24 hour tech support, 2 day shipping, extended return window, up to 2 year extended warranty (probably that return for exchange/refund when outside the mfg warranty thing they always try to sell when you buy something). I see nothing that implies this is required to purchase a Playstation 5 or an Xbox Halo Edition on the Totaltech page, or the respective product pages.

Someone post a screenshot that proves that was the case.
It was the case. https://www.videogameschronicle.com...-restricted-to-its-new-200-membership-scheme/

BBY is gonna triple down on this subscription, i suspect if you find a struggling store, they'll throw it in for free on an open-box TV.
 

scojer

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View attachment 404538

It sounds more like a combination of services... Geek squad, free installation, 24 hour tech support, 2 day shipping, extended return window, up to 2 year extended warranty (probably that return for exchange/refund when outside the mfg warranty thing they always try to sell when you buy something). I see nothing that implies this is required to purchase a Playstation 5 or an Xbox Halo Edition on the Totaltech page, or the respective product pages.

Someone post a screenshot that proves that was the case.
https://www.tomsguide.com/news/this-is-madness-best-buy-ps5-restock-requires-a-dollar200-membership

and for good measure:
1634659152549.png
 
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serpretetsky

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BBY is gonna triple down on this subscription, i suspect if you find a struggling store, they'll throw it in for free on an open-box TV.
Not sure how it is now, but when I worked there they would NEVER discount services or warranties. They might discount other items on the same receipt. The end result to the consumer is similar, except that if you need to return the item then you are returning the discounted price and you can't return services. Not sure how it would go with this though.
 

Verge

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Not sure how it is now, but when I worked there they would NEVER discount services or warranties. They might discount other items on the same receipt. The end result to the consumer is similar, except that if you need to return the item then you are returning the discounted price and you can't return services. Not sure how it would go with this though.
Same, but they'll take extra 200 off the open-box in order to hit their scorecards.
 

Flogger23m

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Newegg's raffle has been fairly successful and it would be nice if they all went that route. I know someone who scored two GPUs at moderate prices from newegg's shuffle. Not bundles either.
 

chameleoneel

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Yep, this definitely isn't an anti scalper maneuver, its just a way for Tim Bestbuy to capture additional margin.

If anything, TotalTech probably helps scalpers, because its creates a barrier for the average person trying to get a single console for themselves or their kid - those people are now looking at a $700+tax total outlay console+membership, but precision-tuned by BestBuy to still be less than a scalper-priced PS5 or Series X.
Yep. an absolutely predatory move from Best Buy.
 

DPI

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Yep. an absolutely predatory move from Best Buy.
In fairness, and as some in another [H] thread have pointed out, some frequent shoppers might actually find some of the TotalTech perks useful.

If nothing else, BB recognized "we can't just create a Buy Pass, we have to at least pad it out with some features even if most won't care".
 

travm

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Only because of the industry naming acheme.
HD, FHD, QHD, UHD... a growing trend to make older/outdated resolution still sound relevant
Actually, 720P was HD before any of that other shit was a thing.
This response is so "first world problems" i'm struggling a bit here.

You can play all your games at 720P, on older hardware. It works, its fun, it actually doesn't look like complete trash either (especially if you couldn't afford the $1500 monitor).

Computer gaming "has been" a rich persons game for a long time, but you can still play on a budget, its not hard. You just have to accept that 1080P "might" be unatainable in all games, and you will run at lower settings, and frame rates.
 

cdabc123

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You just have to accept that 1080P "might" be unatainable in all games, and you will run at lower settings, and frame rates.
What year is this? A 750ti could push 1080p on most games decently.

A 1440p 144hz monitor is like $300.
 

MrGuvernment

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See, this is the Corporatism that only megacorps in our dark cyberpunk future can bring to the table. :borg:
How this is legal is hardly beyond me - the politicians who should be making this practice illegal have been bought and paid for, and now it is what it is, so enjoy literally needing to pay again to pay to play.

Oh, but those dirty scalpers, it's all their fault, riiiiight. :whistle:
People pay for Costco memberships?
 

cdabc123

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It's 2021, how did that 750ti do in the bf2042 beta?
Is that monitor 30+ inches?

I'm guessing either everything I said went over your head, or you really just want to argue with me.
I bet ya could spin up the beta on a 750ti. Ran ark at 1080p just fine.

Sure you can buy all types of monitors for that price point. https://www.gamestop.com/gaming-acc...PwAkvdjJbobUINDmxShoCgzQQAvD_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds

For reference I was able to pick up a 1440p 120hz monitor from microcenter for $150. No need for $1500 monitors.

Your point was dramatic. Hardware moves forward. It has moved past 720p and has been past that for a number of years. Even old cards are decent enough if your traumatized by a crazy market for modern gpus.
 

travm

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I bet ya could spin up the beta on a 750ti. Ran ark at 1080p just fine.

Sure you can buy all types of monitors for that price point. https://www.gamestop.com/gaming-acc...PwAkvdjJbobUINDmxShoCgzQQAvD_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds

For reference I was able to pick up a 1440p 120hz monitor from microcenter for $150. No need for $1500 monitors.

Your point was dramatic. Hardware moves forward. It has moved past 720p and has been past that for a number of years. Even old cards are decent enough if your traumatized by a crazy market for modern gpus.
you missed the point.
 

travm

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I was only disputing this 720p and $1500 monitor nonsense.

Your point was dramatic
You missed the point. What exactly are you disputing?

My point was, you can run games on older hardware, and even AAA games if you accept that some might not run at 1080p(I don't feel this is disputable, it's a vague non-specific statement to begin with).
The $1500 monitor is a nod towards how if you have a more reasonable, mainstream monitor, then the difference between 1080 and 720 is less perceptible. I feel like you barely read what I wrote, and then formed the opinion that I was the person to whom I was originally responding to. Clearly what I posted went over.
 
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NattyKathy

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Been waiting all summer for autumn sales to pick up a whole list of equipment, so this is unwelcome (but not a surprise)
Guess that money is all going to Microcenter, and at this rate I'm inclined to not wait for the November sales and just get it out of the way sooner than later.
 

Teenyman45

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OP: Amazon already does restrict certain deals and sales events to Prime members, which is a more than $100 annual fee. Though Prime does provide a lot more than what either Best Buy or Walmart are offering.

Seem like one of the few possible measure to reduce scalping capability and a way to cash in on demand for stuff that would create some ruffle (and I imagine go against Sony-Microsoft deal) to do it explicitly on the price tag.


Would that include making Costco, coop or any other member only purchasing model illegal has well or some specific case that illegal only if you do not require membership for all items ?

This isn't quite scalping by the retailer because you customer are getting other benefits and at Best Buy at least can immediately cancel the pricey plan right after purchase for a refund.

The difference with these plans and Costco is how the latter set up from the ground up and that outside of a few exceptions to buy something in the physical store you need to be a member. Even from an anti-corpratist perspective it does not immediately seem illegal what these companies are doing (if they are all truly acting independently) but it is unseemly. That said, if there's any communication between mid-level or better executives that are leading to these BS membership plans for the opportunity to buy something then that is the starting point for a price fixing charge, or a cartel charge, or a conspiracy charge or a host of other actions that can be taken for improper anti-competitive behavior. It would be neat if one company pushes things too far in a lottery type of direction and gets hit with running unlicensed gambling.
 

revenant

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I bet ya could spin up the beta on a 750ti. Ran ark at 1080p just fine.

Sure you can buy all types of monitors for that price point. https://www.gamestop.com/gaming-acc...PwAkvdjJbobUINDmxShoCgzQQAvD_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds

For reference I was able to pick up a 1440p 120hz monitor from microcenter for $150. No need for $1500 monitors.

Your point was dramatic. Hardware moves forward. It has moved past 720p and has been past that for a number of years. Even old cards are decent enough if your traumatized by a crazy market for modern gpus.
I gave my buddy a tv and pc (x79 w/ 1050ti) a while back and he plays cyberpunk on it at 720p (55" baseline samsung 2016 4k model) just fine.. looks pretty good too. and by the looks of it I will be riding my 2080ti into the sunset lol.
 
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