In brief: The virtual reality industry has been fairly stagnant for some time now. However, if a secret 'VR Mode' function hackers recently discovered in the Switch's firmware is anything to go by, Nintendo may have recently been interested in breathing new life into the VR market.
Nintendo may be considering an entry into the VR market if a recent report from Ars Technica is any indication. According to the outlet, hackers have managed to dig up a
"VR Mode" hidden within the Switch's software.
Interestingly, this mode is nothing new - it's been tucked away for well over a year. Whether this is because Nintendo has actively been developing the feature in that time frame, or because the company has decided to abandon it is not known at this time.
Based on what hackers have found so far, VR Mode would have split the Switch's screen in two, not unlike what you'd see from phone-based VR experiences. The Switch would likely then be slotted into a dedicated, Nintendo-branded headset to let users take full advantage of it.
For now, if you managed to get VR Mode to boot up, it seems the only thing that will display is a message saying "Please move the console away from your face and click the close button."
Frankly, not much is known about this mysterious mode. The previously-mentioned message seems to be the only piece of info about VR Mode (aside from its name) that hackers can extract from the Switch's firmware.
Unfortunately, Nintendo doesn't seem too keen on clarifying the situation for its fans. The company has always been pretty tight-lipped about the status of its unannounced projects, and it looks like VR Mode will be no different.
If we don't hear anything about this vague feature from Nintendo in the next couple of years, it's probably safe to assume VR Mode has been scrapped entirely.