Home Blog Retro is Now Mainstream | Blog

The NPD Group Blog

Insights and Opinions From Analysts and Experts in More Than 20 Industries

I May Not Be a Tech Luddite After All…

Jul 15, 2016
John Buffone, Executive Director, Industry Analyst ;
Connected Intelligence ;

While I cover cutting edge categories such as digital video distribution and home automation, many who know me realize my category expertise only rarely translates into being an early adopter tech consumer. As a leading indicator, I still drive a car with roll down windows.

This brief story goes back roughly two years when I went on a mission to introduce my children to the video game console that took the world by storm in 1985; The Nintendo Entertainment System (NES). For $100 Amazon sellers offered re-furbished units, and a few dollars more got you a couple of NES Max controllers with the all-so-important turbo buttons. From there all we needed was a few good friends willing to dig up their 30-year-old collection and we had a game library larger than I recall anyone did back in the 80s. While I can’t seem to beat my 9-year-old daughter at Track and Field archery, I only let my son win every other time we duke it out in Blades of Steel.

On the heels of its investment success in Pokemon Go, Nintendo has announced the NES Classic Edition. It comes pre-loaded with 30 games, uses a modern HDMI cable and will be priced at $59.99, far lower than the investment I made in the re-furbished unit. This blast from the past is sure to be a holiday gift hit when it comes to U.S. retail in November.

It turns out my retro style may have been a couple years ahead of the curve rather than another sign that I’m living in an era past. Indeed, the NES re-launch is another sign of classic technology resurfacing. In the music industry, they can’t press vinyl records fast enough to satisfy consumer demand. In mobile, Motorola was rumored to be bringing back the iconic RAZR flip phone, yet the promo video that sparked the rumors was just that, a marketing tactic to evoke nostalgia and remind consumers of how Motorola changed the mobile world in 2004. Perhaps, old school is the way of today’s early adopter; caught between desires for new technologies yet equally drawn to the simplicity of yesterday’s popular devices.


Related Blog Posts


Foldables Are Coming
Foldables Are Coming

Will foldable smartphones give consumers a reason to lust after a new device or will ever-increasing costs become a barrier? See thoughts from Connected Intelligence President, Eddie Hold regarding the latest innovation.

The best phone you cannot (easily) buy
The best phone you cannot (easily) buy

NPD Connected Intelligence president, Eddie Hold, provides his take on Huawei’s latest smartphones, the Mate 20 and Mate 20 Pro

Flashback Friday
Flashback Friday

Are cameras the main point of differentiation between smartphones these days? Connected Intelligence President, Eddie Hold takes a look back at past generations of mobile phones and shares his thoughts on the future.

Amazon Wants To Be Your TV Provider
Amazon Wants To Be Your TV Provider

Connected Intelligence analyst, John Buffone, shares insights regarding Amazon’s all new Fire TV Recast device, which is aimed at routing a larger portion of consumers TV viewing time through Amazon’s ecosystem of hardware and services.

npd.com | © 2018. The NPD Group, Inc.

Follow Us on