Nintendo Switch OLED Announced, Coming October 8 For $350
After months of rumors and reports, Nintendo has confirmed a new Nintendo Switch model. The "OLED Model" is coming on October 8.
After months of rumors, Nintendo has surprise-announced a new Nintendo Switch model. The Nintendo Switch OLED sports a 7-inch screen (up from 6.2 inches) and a wider adjustable stand, but it will not feature performance improvements or 4K support. It will sell for $350 when it's released on October 8, the same day as Metroid Dread.
The announcement notes it includes 64 GB of internal storage, enhanced audio, and a wired LAN port built into the dock; battery life is unchanged from the current Switch model, lasting 4.5-9 hours by Nintendo's estimate. The Switch OLED model will come in two color configurations: a white-and-black finish with a white dock (shown in the trailer), and a neon red/blue set with a black dock. The dock itself features a slightly different design but output in TV mode remains 1080p. All previous Joy-Con controllers will be compatible with the new unit, as Nintendo says the new model will use the same Joy-Cons.
Prior to the announcement, reports widely suggested a new Switch model would have a 7-inch OLED screen and a faster Tegra chip from Nvidia, capable of outputting at 4K in docked mode. Nintendo confirmed to The Verge that this model "does not have a new CPU, or more RAM, from previous Nintendo Switch models." You can check out the full technical specs below for a full look--the new model weighs slightly more at .93 pounds with Joy-Cons attached (up from .88 pounds) and is ever so slightly longer at 9.5 inches (versus 9.4 inches). The minor difference still allows for a significantly larger screen, thanks to a smaller bezel, though the screen remains a 720p display.
Nintendo tends to make hardware revisions for its most popular hardware, especially handheld systems like the Game Boy, DS, and 3DS families. The Switch is a cross between a console and handheld, and it already introduced one hardware revision with the Switch Lite. The $200 Lite will also remain in circulation as the lower-end model, as will the existing $300 Switch model, at least for the time being.
Nintendo had previously claimed that it would not be announcing a Switch hardware revision this year. And of course, this announcement comes within the context of an ongoing semiconductor shortage that is impacting lots of high-tech industries, including game console production. Nintendo's president says the company is no exception, and that the shortage has impacted Switch supply. That means that the remodeled Switch OLED could be difficult to find. President Joe Biden has launched an investigation into the problem.
Even without a hardware revision, though, the current Switch models have been selling very well. The system has sold almost 80 million units in total across both available models, which means it has now beaten the also-popular Nintendo 3DS. And its software has been no slouch either, as popular first-party game Animal Crossing: New Horizons has sold over 30 million units in total. For more on why Nintendo is releasing an upgrade, check out analyst reactions to the new Nintendo Switch OLED.
Nintendo Switch OLED Technical Specs
|Size||4 inches high, 9.5 inches long, and 0.55 inches deep (with Joy-Con attached)|
*The depth from the tip of the analog sticks to the tip of the ZL/ZR buttons is 1.12 inches
|Weight||Approximately .71 lbs|
(Approximately .93 lbs with Joy-Con controllers attached)
|Screen||Multi-touch capacitive touch screen / 7.0 inch OLED screen / 1280x720|
|CPU/GPU||NVIDIA Custom Tegra processor|
Users can easily expand storage space using microSDHC or microSDXC cards up to 2TB (sold separately).
|Wireless||Wi-Fi (IEEE 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac compliant) / Bluetooth 4.1|
|Video output||Up to 1080p via HDMI in TV mode|
Up to 720p via built-in screen in Tabletop mode and Handheld modes
|Audio output||Compatible with 5.1ch Linear PCM output|
Output via HDMI connector in TV mode
|Buttons||Power button / Volume button|
|USB connector||USB Type-C|
Used for charging or for connecting to the Nintendo Switch dock.
|Headphone/mic jack||3.5mm 4-pole stereo (CTIA standard)|
|Game card slot||Nintendo Switch game cards|
|microSD card slot||Compatible with microSD, microSDHC, and microSDXC memory cards|
*Once the microSDXC card is inserted, a system update will be necessary. An internet connection is required to perform this system update.
|Sensor||Accelerometer, gyroscope, and brightness sensor|
|Operating environment||41-95 degrees F / 20-80% humidity|
|Internal battery||Lithium-ion battery / 4310mAh|
Approximately 4.5 - 9 hours
|Charging time||Approximately 3 hours|
*When charging while the hardware is in sleep mode