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Beware Of The Nintendo Switch Emulator Scam: FTC

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Nintendo Switch has proved to be a sensational success. It remains out of stock at most retailers. Even retailers, both online and offline, which have the console in stock are selling it at ridiculously high prices. Industry experts believe that Nintendo Switch would continue to face supply shortages throughout this year. Desperate consumers have a lot more to worry about than just paying a premium for the console, warns FTC.

Don’t download a Nintendo Switch emulator

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has warned consumers about a widespread scam going on that offers access to Nintendo Switch emulators. For the uninitiated, the emulator allows you to run the latest Switch games on your computer. The Japanese company doesn’t offer a legal Switch emulator. The websites and people trying to offer you a Switch emulator have nefarious intentions, warned the FTC’s Consumer & Business Education division attorney Lisa Schifferle.

The scarcity of the console has prompted impatient consumers to explore alternative methods to play the exclusive titles such as the Legend of Zelda and others. There are plenty of authorized emulators for other consoles, but there is none for Nintendo Switch. Lisa Schifferle warned gamers that downloading a Switch emulator may lead to the installation of some unwanted software on your computer.

Once installed, these malware tools could provide you “misleading information about computer problems” that aren’t there. And then they will ask you to pay them to get the problems fixed. Many scammers also use emulators to collect your personal data that they can sell to third parties. The FTC doesn’t usually warn people about video games. But when it does, you should take it seriously.

The FTC added that you should refrain from providing personal information or signing up for things that require your credit card details. Also, do not complete a survey to get some “unlock code.” It’s a scam. Don’t let the stories of gamers running The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild at UHD resolutions deceive you. The Breath of the Wild comes in two versions: one for the Switch and one for the Wii U. There is an authorized emulator for Wii U, but none for the Switch.

Report to FTC if you’ve downloaded an emulator

The FTC recommends that you keep your security software current by setting it to update automatically. Interestingly, the regulator says you can play Nintendo Switch at your friend’s house until you get to buy one for yourself. If you have already installed a Switch emulator, you can report it to FTC here.

The scammers are targeting Nintendo Switch because they know the console is in short supply, and people are desperate to try out the exclusive titles such as the new Legend of Zelda and Mario Kart. Also, there are thousands of gamers who want to play the Switch games, but have no idea that the emulator is not an authorized offering.

Nintendo sold 2.4 million Switch consoles in March

Nintendo Switch is still early in its life-cycle, but analysts believe it is on its way to shattering the record of Wii. Instead of competing with the latest PS4 Pro or Xbox One S, the Switch targets casual gamers and families. Market research firm SuperData said that Nintendo shipped a staggering 2.4 million units of Switch in the month of March. Considering the console is still in short supply, the company sold almost all units it could manufacture.

After the impressive first-month sales, SuperData revised its full-year 2017 Switch sales estimates from five million units to 7.2 million units. The March sales figures were based on channel checks. SuperData CEO Joost van Dreunen said in a statement that Switch was “performing above expectations.” The console is on its way to restore investor confidence in Nintendo.

Nintendo Switch to attract Xbox and PS4 gamers

SuperData added that Nintendo has many big releases lined up this year for the Switch, such as Mario Kart 8 Deluxe and Splatoon 2. Jefferies analyst Atul Goyal also said in a research note that the company has a strong first-party game pipeline. It also has some interesting third-party titles. Goyal believes the new titles will encourage the PS4 and Xbox One users to switch to Nintendo Switch.

Jefferies has a Buy rating on the stock with $43 price target. Nintendo shares have gone up by nearly 20% since the release of Switch last month. Nintendo sold a record 330,637 units during the launch weekend in Japan alone. The biggest challenge before Nintendo is managing the inventory. The company might initially have limited the inventory to make it look like a hot console. Now that it has turned out to be a major success, Nintendo is rushing to ramp up production.

Nintendo Switch bundle available at GameStop

If you want to buy Nintendo Switch, it is available at GameStop as a $500 bundle. GameStop promises to ship the console by May 5th. The bundle includes the console with gray or neon Joy-Con controllers, physical copies of Mario Kart 8 Deluxe and The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, and a 128GB microSD card. That’s not a bad deal if you want everything that’s included in the bundle.

GameStop said last month that the console sold out within hours every time one of its stores got a restock. The retailer believes Nintendo will be chasing consumer demand throughout 2017.

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