Video Game Consoles Are Somehow Spared From Inflation in Japan

The weaker yen has triggered price hikes on electronics from iPhones to refrigerators across Japan this year, with one glaring exception: the video game console.

Sony Group Corp., Microsoft Corp. and Nintendo Co. have held fast to a 100-yen-to-the-dollar conversion rate that today sees their consoles as much as $100 cheaper in Japan than elsewhere in the world. No company wants to be first to break the unwritten rule against raising prices after a console’s release, for fear of losing players and game developers to rivals, and all three believe they can recoup any losses through international software sales. But that may be changing.