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Something to look forward to: Nintendo is reportedly gearing up to introduce a brand-new version of its Switch handheld during a Nintendo Direct presentation that could take place as early as next week. According to one Nintendo fan site, the Switch 2 will feature backward compatibility with physical and digital Switch games. What's more, devs will even be able to enhance their original games to take advantage of the new console's additional processing power.
The original Nintendo Switch arrived in early 2017 following years of speculation and rumors. Shipping a handheld when rivals like Microsoft and Sony were focusing on home consoles was a huge risk, but it paid off. As of December 31, 2023, Nintendo had sold nearly 140 million Switch consoles. That's good enough for third place all time, trailing only the Nintendo DS and the PlayStation 2.
Nintendo's new Switch is expected to ship with a larger 8-inch display, although it's unclear if it'll be an LCD panel or an OLED variant. An earlier rumor claimed the Switch 2 will be powered by custom silicon from Nvidia. Hundreds of developers are believed to be working on games for the new system, suggesting launch is imminent.
The first-gen switch is approaching its eighth anniversary, having launched on March 7, 2017. It would be neat if Nintendo could time the launch of the Switch 2 on March 7 of this year but no word yet if that is even being considered. We also haven't heard anything about a Lite version of the Switch 2, although that is not surprising considering the first Lite came more than two years after the original Switch. The OLED Switch, the latest version as of this writing, hit the scene in late 2021.
Pricing could play a major role in the Switch 2's success out of the gate. The original debuted at $299.99 and has mostly held at that price, save for the occasional sale. For comparison, the OLED model commands $349 while the Lite will set you back $199.