Walmart NES Classic 5pm Sale Is Under Tai Ding Scalper Bot Attack

Posted: Nov 16 2016, 2:17pm CST | by , Updated: Nov 17 2016, 3:24pm CST, in News | Black Friday 2018

 

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Walmart NES Classic 5pm Sale is Under Tai Ding Scalper Bot Attack

Bots used to buy rare sneakers are now tasked to shop Nintendo NES Classic at Walmart, faster than any human.

Update: Nov. 17: We have talked to a bot user who scored a dozen NES Classic yesterday. We also got the tips and tricks of a fair and square deal hunter who managed to buy a NES Classic at Walmart without the use of a bot. Humans can win against bots, but it is hard. Find out everything you should do to improve your chances to purchase a NES Classic.

Update 5pm ET:

The NES Classic was in stock on walmart.com at briefly after 5pm ET. See the screenshot below. I added it to the cart and it was immediatly market out of stock. In stock tracker Zoolert and InStockNow did again not see it. This is likely proof that bots snatched most of the NES stock on sale today. If you managed to buy an NES Classic, email us. We love to hear your story.

NES in stock at walmart 5:01pm ET

Bots become a problem of Holiday shopping of hard to find items. Automated shopping scripts have been a problem since a while now in the sneaker scene. Now a new bot is targeting the Walmart online store. A bot script named Tai Ding is circulating that has automated shopping on Walmart's online store for any item.

Using a bot to buy products online makes a lot of sense if these items are rare and catch a premium on the reseller market. The prime target for this right now is the Nintendo NES Classic. It's regular price is low with $59.99. The reseller profit is above $150. As reported yesterday, Walmart is offering limited stock of Nintendo NES Classic every day this week at 5pm ET.

If there was inventory available yesterday, it was sold out in a fraction of a minute. The real-time inventory services Zoolert and InStockNow did not register the NES Classic inventory at 5pm yesterday. These services update every minute. I don't belive that both services are in sync, which means that the NES stock sold out in seconds.

A shopping bot script can complete a transaction in less than a second. It is basically as fast as the online shop is letting complete the purchase. Until a human shopper moves the mouse on the buy button, the bots already snagged up all inventory. A scalper under the pseudonym Mike Friend used the Tai Ding bot to buy multiple NES Classic consoles worth of about $500 yesterday. Mike Friend posted a screenshot of the order confirmations on Twitter.

“I’m one of the bad guys,” Friend told Venture Beat. “I think they call us scalpers, but I’m a reseller.”

The Tai Ding Walmart shopping bot is real and a threat to Holiday shopping. The developer behind Tai Ding has not released the bot publicly yet, but plans to extend the bot to others stores including ToysRUs and Target.

Walmart and other stores could face a major bot problem that they need to deal with to not loose consumers. Sneaker shops are already dealing with bots since a long time. It is a hard problem to solve. It is similar battle that Niantic faced with the Pokemon Go bots.

As things stand, I would not get my hopes up to score a NES Classic today at 5pm on walmart.com as the couple Tai Ding bots in existence will wipe the store clean in seconds again.

Nintendo has issued a statement on Twitter on November 11 acknowledging the shortage of the NES Classic Edition. "The Nintendo Entertainment System: NES Classic Edition system is a hot item, and we are working hard to keep up with consumer demand. There will be a steady flow of additional systems through the holiday shopping season and into the new year. Please contact your local retailers to check availability."

The shrunk NES console, retailing for $59.99 list price, features the classic Nintendo NES controller many geeks have grown up with. The retro console comes pre-installed with 30 classic NES games including Super Mario Bros., Pac-Man, Metroid, Donkey Kong, The Legend of Zelda and Kirby's Adventures. The NES Classic Edition system is a miniaturized version of the groundbreaking NES, originally released in 1985.

Find more Holiday Gifts, alternatives to these hard to get toys, in the I4U News Holiday Gift Guide.

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The Author

<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/2" rel="author">Luigi Lugmayr</a>
Manfred "Luigi" Lugmayr () is the founding Chief Editor of I4U News and brings over 25 years experience in the technology field to the ever evolving and exciting world of gadgets, tech and online shopping. He started I4U News back in 2000 and evolved it into vibrant technology news and tech and toy shopping hub.
Luigi can be contacted directly at ml[@]i4u.com.

 

 

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