We finally know what the Switch Lite will be like but we still don’t know much about the Nintendo Switch Pro and its release date. According to Doug Bowser, the only Nintendo console that will be releasing this holiday is the Switch Lite, and the Pro will come later.
Ever since the start of 2019, we have been hearing a lot of chatter about Nintendo working on two variants of its portable gaming console, the Switch. A budget variant called the Switch Lite and a more powerful variant called the Switch Pro.
Nintendo officially unveiled a lighter version of the Switch called the Switch Lite yesterday. Since the Switch Lite’s price is a $100 cheaper than the base variant, Nintendo has also taken out a couple of features found in the regular Switch. One of the features that the Switch Lite doesn’t have is the ability to connect to a TV as well as detachable Joy-Con controllers.
As far as the Switch Pro and its release date are concerned, very little is known at this point aside from rumors and industry speculation.
In an interview with CNET, president of Nintendo of North America, Doug Bowser, spoke about some of these omitted features and what the company hopes to achieve with the Nintendo Lite. The Switch Lite is $100 cheaper as compared to the base hardware which is at $199.99, this is the same price as the highest-end 3DS.
Bowser talked about the base Switch and the Switch Lite and said, “We believe the two systems will complement each other and coexist in the market.” Even though the Lite is being distinguished as a “compact, lightweight, dedicated gaming device”, it is still independent of the Switch in a lot of ways.
Having ditched the base Switch’s ability to connect to a TV with USB Type-C, the Switch Lite is truly a portable handheld gaming device. Another thing that Nintendo has omitted in the Lite is the detachable Jon-Cons found in the main Switch.
It will be interesting to see if these features are included in the Switch Pro or not (whenever it releases).
Even though the detachable Jon-Cons are removed in the Switch Lite, Nintendo has still included plus-shaped D-pad, just like a Nintendo 3DS. According to Bowser, the Joy-Con’s four-button design is made to be versatile in any configuration. Bowser has also said that currently, Nintendo has “no plans or [anything] to announce in terms of further variations of Joy-Con.”
Earlier this year, a report claimed that the Nintendo Switch Lite (then referred to as Switch Mini) is the spiritual successor to the Nintendo 3DS. This is something that is reflected in Nintendo’s choice of D-pad in the Switch Lite.
Granted, the Lite is quite similar to the 3DS in a lot of ways, Nintendo believes that there still remains a high demand for the 3DS. Despite the release of Switch Lite, Nintendo will continue its support for the 3DS family as long as there is a demand for it.
As of right now, Nintendo doesn’t make it possible to easily play Switch games on two devices. If you buy the Switch Lite, you won’t be able to play games on your TV. You will have to own the main Switch in order to do that. This is something Nintendo is currently working on. “I could see this fitting into a household where there are multiple players… and one flagship Nintendo Switch,” Bowser says about Switch Lite, adding, “Yes, you will have the ability to transfer between devices, your gameplay experiences. More to come there, but that is the intention.”
What does this mean exactly? We don’t know as of now but it is likely Nintendo will shed more light on this as the Switch Lite release date approaches.
The Switch Lite has a release date falling around Holiday 2019. The Switch Pro is likely to have a release date after Lite’s since it makes sense for Nintendo to focus on one console at a time.
This means that the delayed Switch Pro launch will have its release date competing against other next-gen consoles like Sony’s PlayStation 5 and Microsoft’s Xbox Project Scarlett. All of this will make 2020-2021 exciting years for the gaming industry.
The Nintendo Switch Lite has a release date for the 29th of September later this year with a price set at $199 USD.