Nintendo Switch Comparison: Switch Lite, New Battery Life Model, And More
Switches get stitches.
It was only a week ago that Nintendo surprised Switch owners with the handheld-only Switch Lite. The company gave us an additional surprise in the form of yet another new Switch model--which is essentially identical to the original model but with better battery life. While it isn't the substantial mid-generation upgrade that many have been eagerly anticipating, what it does offer in extended battery life makes it well worth considering for those seeking the full Switch experience but without needing to plug it in quite so often. According to Nintendo's product page, it will launch in mid-August in the US.
That said, there are some benefits to the upcoming Lite model; it sports a traditional directional pad. And like the new original Switch model, it has improved battery life. The Nintendo Switch Lite hits store shelves on September 20, 2019 alongside the launch of The Legend Of Zelda: Link's Awakening remake. While you can choose from a yellow, gray, or teal color scheme, a special Pokemon Sword and Shield edition will hit November 8, 2019 just ahead of the games' launch.
With the release of the revised model and Lite, there will be a total of three different iterations of Nintendo Switch. As a result, you likely have questions about the specifics around each model's varying specs, battery life, and more. Below, we compiled some of the important specs and features for both models of the the original Switch, as well as the new Switch Lite for a simple comparison between the three. We also have a more in-depth look at when and why Nintendo refreshes its hardware.
Nintendo Switch vs. Nintendo Switch Lite
|Original Switch (original)||Original Switch (new)||Switch Lite|
|Screen Size||6.2 inches||6.2 inches||5.5 inches|
|Resolution||720p (undocked)||720p (undocked)*||720p|
|Dimensions (H x W x D)||4" x 9.4" x 0.55"||4" x 9.4" x 0.55"||3.6" x 8.2" x 0.55"|
|Weight||0.88 lbs / 399 g"||0.88 lbs / 399 g*||0.61 lbs / 277 g|
|Battery Life Range||2.5 - 6.5 hours||4.5 - 9 hours||3 - 7 hours|
|Graphics Processor||Custom Nvidia Tegra GPU||Custom Nvidia Tegra GPU||Custom Nvidia Tegra GPU|
|Internal Memory||32 GB||32 GB||32 GB|
|TV Mode / Docking||Yes||Yes||No|
*It's possible that this is the new iteration of the Switch that prompted a recent FCC filing, which suggested that the existing Switch could see some changes to its internal components. We'll confirm and update these details as we learn more. Otherwise, they've been left identical to the original model.
While you don't get some notable features with the Switch Lite, like HD rumble or the bigger screen, it does come as a cheaper, more portable option with slightly better battery life--it's attractive for those who would primarily play in handheld mode. However, by design, there will be a few games that won't work with the new Switch Lite, such as the Nintendo Labo Kits; in the case of something like 1-2 Switch, you'd need to sync a separate pair of Joy-Con. For everything else you need to know about the new system, check out our Switch Lite FAQ.
The removal of features from the Switch Lite is where the new original Switch model appears more appealing. If you're unwilling to sacrifice HD rumble, detachable Joy-Cons, or the ability to play certain games, then the new original model is the one to get. Admittedly, if you already own a Switch, the prospect of better battery life is a selling point that will wildly vary from person to person. Regardless, it certainly doesn't hurt to have the option. If anything, this model is guaranteed to be the go-to Switch for anyone who hasn't yet picked one up.
With these new models on the way, Nintendo said that it has plans for a method to transfer files, useful for existing Switch owners who would move to any of the new systems, though there aren't any details on it quite yet. Those hoping for a sort of "Switch Pro" model with higher-end features should note that the Switch Lite is the only new version planned for this year.
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