Some people have been holding off on purchasing a Nintendo Switch in hopes of a smaller, more powerful unit launching. However, those close to Nintendo told the Wall Street Journal that there are no plans to release a Nintendo Switch 2.0 at any point in 2018, and that it likely won’t arrive until at least 2019.
As noted on Video Gamer, even the 2019 release slate isn’t made explicitly clear. Right now Nintendo is focused on peripherals, accessories and expanding the exclusivity line-up for the Switch, which includes the Nintendo Labo.
However, it does appear as if Nintendo is already working on an iteration of a new Switch. This shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone who knows how Nintendo handles their handheld systems. The Nintendo DS came out back in 2004, and then the Nintendo 3DS followed in 2010. Shortly thereafter the 3DS XL came out two years later. Nintendo has consistently launched and re-launched its handheld line since the original Game Boy.
With the Nintendo Switch working as both a handheld and home console, it’s no surprise that the company would adopt the iterative release method for the Switch. The only question is: what would change?
Upgrading the GPU would mean that games could look better or run at higher resolutions when docked, but then it would also kill the battery quicker, and it would also mean people with older Switch units couldn’t play newer games, creating a fragmented market. The likelihood is that a smaller unit might be made with slightly longer battery life and storage capacity, as that would make the most sense. It would mean that future games could still run on the older units, but those who lay down cash for the newer units would have larger storage space and possibly a small enough unit to fit comfortably in a carry bag.
Of course, we won’t know what the Switch 2.0 will look like until Nintendo makes the announcement official… but it doesn’t sound like it’s coming anytime soon this year.
(Main image courtesy of Sinchen Lin)