Tuesday, January 02, 2007

$300 Camera Now Sells for $30 (New)

Less than five years ago, we purchased a digital camera. It sold for $300 and we purchased it for $170, because we snapped up a floor model at an Office Depot store that was going out of business in Downtown Miami.

With our 43 percent discount, the digital deal seemed like a pretty savvy, very frugal move on our part. But fast forward to the 2006 holiday shopping season in which we spotted our camera (or a model pretty close to ours, with the same memory and features) selling new for $30.

That steep fall -- from $300 to $30 -- shows how sharply the prices of must-have objects drop given the steady pace of innovation and consumer demand. I've seen the same trends in video games for kids. Hot, hot, hot games that sell for $50 to $70 are sold used for less than $15 --just weeks or months later.

My teenage son just told me that games for GameBoy Advance are now selling for 2 bucks each.

Those sharp price drops make me think about the real value of so-called must-have gadgets, games and gizmos. Sometimes it pays to wait for a newer, cheaper model. Maybe.



The Frugal Duchess Boutique


Steve Mertz said...

Here's the question Sharon-What would your son do if you wrapped up a blank present and told him you'd be buying that Game boy after the Holidays-when the price comes down ;-)

PS I tried this strategy once with my Ex-wife-come to find out it's a little dicey!!

mbhunter said...

As long as we can still make the stuff, you can almost always get more bang for your buck by waiting on electronics. But if you want something you have to buy it and realize that it will be outdated in a month.