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Feature Article

Report - New Nintendo Switch Models Are Now In Production

Nintendo moves production to Southeast Asia as its updated Switch models reportedly move forward.

It's been more than two years since the launch of the Nintendo Switch, and the company has yet to publicly discuss plans for new revisions of the hardware. We know from previous reports that two new Nintendo Switch models could be on the way, possibly as soon as this year. Earlier this year, Nintendo said it would not announce the new systems during E3, and that indeed turned out to be the case, with last week's Nintendo Direct focusing exclusively on software. But a new report from The Wall Street Journal published during E3 2019 reveals some new details these rumored new Switch models.

Specifically, the report states that Nintendo has decided to move the manufacturing of the new consoles to Southeast Asia instead of China. This is a result of concerns about potential United States tariffs on electronics made in China. As we reported previously, President Trump's proposed import tax rate of 25 percent would impact video game consoles, as well as smartphones and computers. In theory, this could lead to price increases on game consoles--from Nintendo, as well as Microsoft and Sony--as companies pass on the cost to consumers.

The alternative would be to absorb the cost themselves, which is obviously not a welcome concept for companies. Game consoles are not historically where the money is made in the games business. Oftentimes, systems are sold at a loss or with very thin margins, with profits instead coming from software and services. Those margins do improve over time, but a 25% tariff would nonetheless be unwelcome.

Should the 25 percent tariff go into effect for Switch consoles shipped into the United States, that would impact how much money Nintendo--and other companies--make on console sales. Nintendo has been the outlier in this area, however, as the company maintained from day one of Switch sales in 2017 that it makes money on each console sold.

If the 25 percent tariff goes into effect, that could cut into the Switch's profit profile, which is likely why Nintendo has elected to move production of the console outside of China.

According to WSJ's report, Nintendo has already moved production of the existing Switch model, as well as the two new rumored ones, to Southeast Asia. Regarding the new systems, one is said to have a similar form factor to the existing model but feature better components, with the other expected to have a different look and lower specs that make it less expensive. Given the systems are now reportedly in production, they could release soon, WSJ said. A WSJ report earlier this year said a new Switch could release by the end of June, but there's been no indication of that happening. With the end of the month in sight, that possibility seems exceedingly unlikely.

Nintendo declined to comment on the report when approached by WSJ.

It's unclear when Nintendo may announce the new Switch models, if they are indeed real. With no new hardware to discuss during its Direct conference this week, Nintendo made a series of software announcements, including The Witcher 3 for Nintendo Switch and a sequel to The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild.

Nintendo has a long history of offering revised models of its gaming hardware, particularly on the handheld side. The rumored new systems would not be a new generation of Switch hardware, but merely enhanced or refined versions of what's already on the market.

Got a news tip or want to contact us directly? Email news@gamespot.com

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Eddie Makuch

Bring back the Whalers.
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161 Comments  RefreshSorted By 
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Avatar image for TJDMHEM
TJDMHEM

I might get a new one.

Avatar image for silv3rst0rm
silv3rst0rm

Shady Ninty and their secrets!
Tell us already so we can pre-order!

Avatar image for lonewolf1044
lonewolf1044

I already have one and I am not buying an new one as I am not dependent on it as I also own an Xbox and PS4.

Avatar image for silv3rst0rm
silv3rst0rm

@lonewolf1044: Well I think exactly the opposite!

I'd rather be a day-one "switcher" (sorry about that bad pun) since I know I'll be easily able to sell my switch for a good price before the initial model gets too old, overflow the market and lose all it's resell value.

Just look at the Xbox Ones...
Those who cared to switch to "X" were able to sell their original xbox ones for ± 150~200$.
I now see original Xbox ones going for less than 100$ and they seem to be all over the place!

Avatar image for inkman66
inkman66

Remember about a year ago when people were saying Trump ending "net neutrality" will be the death of the internet? Well now they are on the INTERNET saying Trump's tariffs will be paid for by American consumers …...

Avatar image for aross2004
aross2004

@inkman66:

How very misleading of you. There are already ways that consumers are getting screwed on the dissolution of net neutrality regulations, even though we still haven't seen the full extent of it yet.

ATandT and Verizon are both liberally redefining the meaning of the word “unlimited” with their supposedly unlimited plans. The more expensive plans are either paired with the company’s own streaming services, or the companies intentionally degrade the quality of the video under certain conditions, (IE-using a non-proprietary streaming service). These practices can give the carrier’s content an advantage in the marketplace over smaller, independent video producers.

Also, Sprint has been throttling internet traffic to Microsoft’s Skype service, (causing the video quality to be considerably poorer than it should be), because Skype is a tool that competes with Sprint’s own calling service.

Comcast now has new speed limits where videos will be throttled down to 480p on all its mobile plans, unless customers pay extra for the plan.

A recent study also shows that the largest U.S. telecom companies, (including Verizon, ATandT, and T-Mobile), are already slowing down internet traffic from apps like YouTube and Netflix. Verizon’s throttling of services even affected the Santa Clara County Fire Department’s ability to provide emergency services during the California wildfires in 2018, (the fire department experienced considerably slower speeds on their devices and had to sign up for a new, more expensive plan for acceptable speeds).

Legal groups that represent companies like Facebook and Netflix are currently locked in a legal battle against the FCC over what the new rules will actually look like. Many companies are still taking a wait and see approach until those rules are more clearly defined, (and they know for certain how much shady shit they can actually get away with legally), but already there are obvious identifiable ramifications here.

Finally, multiple states, including California, have already passed their own net neutrality protections, (but whether those state-level rules will survive a legal challenge is still an outstanding question).

Too bad for you some people actually stay informed on things, so you can't just get away with your blanket BS statements. It's obvious that consumers are already being negatively affected, (even if they don't realize it right now). It's only going to get worse if unchecked.

So it's one of two things here. Either you are intentionally being misleading, or you just have no idea what you're talking about.

Or maybe you should just lay off all the Orange Kool-Aid, it certainly isn't making you any smarter.

Avatar image for chriswilkes509
chriswilkes509

This will be great right here because I would like an Nintendo Switch with an bigger screen

Avatar image for silv3rst0rm
silv3rst0rm

@chriswilkes509: I'd willingly switch my switch for an XL model.

I play it handheld a lot and wish that ± 1" bezel would be all screen space...

Avatar image for HBninjaX
HBninjaX

glad I waited

Avatar image for chippiez
Chippiez

Trump is the greatest president in recent history. China will lose this battle. Fair trade or Tariff the shit out that Chinese slop.

Avatar image for aross2004
aross2004

@chippiez: Pretty sure you're posting right now on a device with "Chinese slop" components in it.

Since this is obviously an issue that you personally care so much about, please throw away or destroy said device straight away. It's really the only thing to do, rite?

Avatar image for HBninjaX
HBninjaX

@aross2004: Here comes the Chinese Defense Force

Avatar image for aross2004
aross2004

@HBninjaX: Here comes another lemming who got Americonned. It must be a real comfort to no longer have to think for yourself, so much easier to just let others do it for you. Congratulations on that.

Avatar image for HBninjaX
HBninjaX

@aross2004: "these insecurities ain't gonna project themselves"

Avatar image for ecs33
ecs33

China cannot win a trade war with the US.

Avatar image for forester057
Forester057

Plenty of countries can make this stuff. China is hurting themselves more than anyone else by not bargaining. Of course they don't want to bargain. They've been screwing us for years and no president has ever said enough. China will cave or they will lose lots of deals like this. They need us more than we need them.

Avatar image for felmaloney
FelMaloney

You gotta love these reports:

WSJ: "Nintendo is working on new models, will NOT announce in E3".

Nintendo: does NOT announce in E3

Gamespot: "New models confirmed!"

Avatar image for PrpleTrtleBuBum
PrpleTrtleBuBum

i dunno. switch is the only current console ive even been considering of getting. over and over. cool concept and a few great games. but i worry if mario odyssey etc will leave me feeling like i felt with sunshine luigis mansion etc. so plasticy throwaway experiences. game flows easily but when i reach credits i realize i didnt once feel actually hyped or pumped

great games but it could really use some actual new resident evil and ninja gaidens and stuff to balance it out

Avatar image for blkmac
BlkMac

@PrpleTrtleBuBum: odyssey was good, not amazing. they still cant touch mario 64 status and thats a shame. odyssey was cool to play tho. rent it maybe. dnt pay $60 cuz it aint worth it.

Avatar image for PrpleTrtleBuBum
PrpleTrtleBuBum

@blkmac: I guess I clarify a bit. These days I pretty much only like games during which I can say "I'm Batman!" or "I'm Shepard!" or "I'm Chris Redfield!" or so. Dramatic music and really a game that almost tries too much.

I also don't care for stuff like GTA that much because majority of time you're just kicking some street punks

But yea UA3 and Bayonetta might fill that "I'm Cap!" or "I'm Bayonetta!" itch. And later on Metroid

Avatar image for robitussin_latte
robitussin_latte

@PrpleTrtleBuBum: Bayonetta 3 and Marvel UA3 are both gonna be Switch exclusives! Trust me, Mario Odyssey is amazing, as is LOZ:BOTW. I’ve been playing Monster Hunter nonstop on it since I got it, and I really want Hyrule Warriors. The cross-plats are nice too cos you can play em on the go, sometimes at the expense of graphics but eh whatever.

Avatar image for nicemouse
NiceMouse

Just as well, seeing as China is not on good terms with practically any country nowadays.

Avatar image for Xristophoros
Xristophoros

the trump tariff fiasco is a relatively new development, though. how could nintendo have changed production methods so quickly and already have the new switches pumping out off the assembly line? if anything, this manufacturing change might delay the new sku? i am greatly looking forward to the new, cheaper model as the price of the current model is far too expensive and holds little value to me based on its outdated specs. for all the praise people have for the switch, i find it interesting how hungry people are for new hardware. i think this says a lot about how underwhelming the current switch model is -- people just don't want to admit it. the lack of a proper d-pad is a tragedy for one. the bezel of the screen looks like a device from 5 years ago. battery life could be much improved. personally, i would like to see a smaller, one piece design if possible. i have no need for the joy-cons to be separated -- which, by the way, are also known to break on occasion. if nintendo does not improve the performance in some capacity, 3rd party support will be harder to attain in the coming years. unless, of course, nintendo is complacent in porting 5+ year old games and does not want to be forward thinking.

Avatar image for neurogia
Neurogia

@Xristophoros: That sounds like a terrible redesign. I hope the enhanced Switch model has a larger internal memory capacity. It sounds like what you're asking for is another PS VITA, and everyone knows how that turned out.

Avatar image for blkmac
BlkMac

@neurogia: the vita failed for the same reasons the wii u did. no games. the company failed that system, not the consumer. the same thing will happen to the switch as well as soon as it runs out of games to port over

Avatar image for Xristophoros
Xristophoros

@neurogia: eh, vita failed for a myriad of reasons, the main one being lack of developer support, including 1st party. the simplified switch mini will be there to compliment the more expensive one, so i'm not saying to phase out the original design altogether. nintendo needs to address the price point, that much is clear. plus, some ppl want it to be more portable... the current switch form factor is not practical for everyone.

Avatar image for tingtong
tingtong

Just give me an OLED screen and anything that’s gonna fix the washed out colors in Zelda

Avatar image for NiteX
NiteX

@tingtong: Turn your screen brightness down haha.

Avatar image for chippiez
Chippiez

@tingtong: Zelda, they did on purpose. It's software

Avatar image for deactivated-5d04c6ddb5adc

@tingtong: An IPS can have perfect colors, OLED is more about dark contrast which you don't need with a small portable screen nearly as much as with a large one. They can just use a better IPS screen, not all are equal.

Avatar image for chriswilkes509
chriswilkes509

That's great an new Nintendo Switch model with an bigger screen and harddisk drive let's said 1TB or 2TB harddisk drive now that would be awesome right there.

Avatar image for Xristophoros
Xristophoros

@chriswilkes509: why increase the hdd if you can just buy a cheap sd card? i don't see them increasing the internal storage much at all, nor do i see them making a larger screen as it is already too large for a handheld device. that said, if they reduce the thickness of the bezel, that alone could give you another 1" (diagonal) of viewing space.

Avatar image for lokeshusse
Lokeshusse

Let's play "Who Want's to Pay a Shitload of Dough For Old Ass Hardware!"

Ready, set, go!

Avatar image for tingtong
tingtong

@lokeshusse: Pretty sure all that dough is for the best games on the planet.

Avatar image for blkmac
BlkMac

@tingtong: best games on the planet? just stop it

Avatar image for aross2004
aross2004

@lokeshusse: Me! Me! Me!

Avatar image for atherworld
atherworld

Sony charges $600 for Ps3 initially. Shoots themselves in the foot.

Nintendo jacks up the prices of their consoles and handhelds. Created Ambassador program for handheld because of public outcry. Quickly dropped console prices.

Microsoft initially offers XBOX One at $100 more than Ps4. Quickly drops price.

Not sure why thye'd ever consider increasing prices. seems $400 is the most amount most gamers will pay. Any increase will cost more than is made. And lose far more than tariff increases.

Avatar image for thelostscribe
Thelostscribe

@atherworld: If Playstation and Xbox both dropped a brand new console at the same price it would make things a bit different. Each one of those cases, the other console was offered cheaper. The 360 was $400 when the PS3 dropped for $600 and Sony made a last second decision to offer the PS4 a hundred bucks cheaper than the One.

As consoles get more powerful, I think they'll launch at $500. I think $600 is still too much at this time, but I would expect the PS5 and neXt Box to drop at $449 or $499 together. While the Switch is on fire, it is not a viable alternative for the millions of gamer's who buy up all the yearly AAA games.

Avatar image for blkmac
BlkMac

@thelostscribe: i dnt think so. MS overcharged for the XB1 because they forced us to buy it with the kinect packaged in at first

Avatar image for thelostscribe
Thelostscribe

@blkmac: Yes, that but there were reports that Playstation was going to charge the same price. However, the backlash against the Xbox One's price had them announce it at $400.

That said, gaming will get more expensive. We've had pretty stable console prices for about 15 years, standard addition game prices haven't risen in about the same time. Eventually we will have to pay more for these consoles at launch and probably the games as well.

Avatar image for HOLYSHMUCK
HOLYSHMUCK

@thelostscribe: On rising prices: not necessarily. More people on this planet are born which has resulted in more people gaming every year. More people buying your product helps to offset the cost of the product.

15 years ago, selling 500,000 copies of a game at $60 was a success.

Nowadays, it's (roughly) selling 1-2 million copies at $60 to be a success.

As long as more and more people are introduced to gaming, the cost of production (inflation) can be offset this way, which helps keep the prices down to $60.

Avatar image for blkmac
BlkMac

@thelostscribe: yea but those were rumors and nothing more. Sony was def NOT going to make the same mistake they made with the PS3. Sony knew what they were doing and def got a head up because of the price difference and that whole DRM stunt MS tried to pull in the beginning.

Avatar image for amoo2
AMoo2

More politics than new system info.

Derp.

Avatar image for ermacos
ermacos

I started with Nintendo since 80s with gameboy and in my experience, Nintendo is always working in new hardware, but not as a refresh of its current generation and nearly the end of switch cycle. Nintendo always makes a new hardware every 4-6years. They may work in a new console for sure but not an upgrade of the current gen.

I abandon Nintendo after camecube. I dont like to pay extreme money for the brand itself, because Nintendo consoles are so much less for what you pay and in comparison with.

If they ever decide to give us a hardware that worths the money we spend, count me in..

Avatar image for atherworld
atherworld

@ermacos: Nintnedo's been upgrading for quite a while now:

Game Boy Advance -> Game Boy Advance SP

DS -> DSi

Wii -> Wii U

3DS -> 3DS XL

2DS - > 2DS XL

Avatar image for blkmac
BlkMac

@atherworld: poor virtual boy nvr got an upgrade

Avatar image for freedom01
freedom01

@atherworld: I would also add Gameboy -> Gameboy Color

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