Nintendo’s 2-in-1 Switch console has been a huge success for the Japanese video game company. To date, it has already sold 61 million units between the original Switch and the budget-friendly Switch Lite. Thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic, those numbers have picked up in recent months despite it being more than three years since the console’s initial release date.
Now, it appears that Nintendo has something new up its sleeve. An anonymous source reportedly briefed on the project told Bloomberg that Nintendo plans to release an upgraded Switch model sometime next year. It will be accompanied by a lineup of new games.
Nintendo’s 2021 Switch to Get More Power
The original Switch is already a great console that’s capable of running almost every triple-A title out there. However, it simply can’t compete with the likes of Microsoft’s Xbox One or Sony’s PlayStation 4. With both of those companies planning to release their next-gen consoles this holiday season, Nintendo will likely lose some momentum.
The Switch is so unique, though, that it can comfortably co-exist with those other consoles. To ensure that it stays attractive, Nintendo reportedly plans to upgrade some important specs. For one, the 2021 Switch will likely have 4K graphics.
The relatively low resolution of the original model is consistently mentioned as one of the console’s few downsides. If Nintendo can equip next year’s version with a 4K display without sacrificing battery life it will be a major accomplishment.
Meanwhile, the upcoming Switch is rumored to feature more processing power. Exactly how much of an increase there will be remains unknown.
Insiders also note that a lineup of new games will launch either with the new console or shortly after it. There will reportedly be titles for every player to enjoy, whether they want a casual experience or something more involved. That would explain why Nintendo has had such a light year of software releases in 2020. If it is indeed planning new games for a more powerful Switch then the wait will be worth it.
Nintendo has enjoyed an extremely strong 2020 thanks in part to the COVID-19 pandemic. That reflects the success of the video game industry as a whole as people look for new ways to occupy their time.
Notably, March’s “Animal Crossing: New Horizons” helped spark a stock rally of more than 70 percent for the company and became an overnight sensation.
The fact that Nintendo has resolved its Switch production bottleneck has also helped matters as it is now able to keep the console on the shelves for consumers to purchase. In June, it sold 5.67 million Switch units split almost evenly between the original console and the Switch Lite.
To date, the Wii is Nintendo’s best-selling home console with 102 million units sold. The portable Nintendo DS reached 154 million units. However, analysts believe that the Switch has the potential to surpass both of those milestones.
Hideki Yasuda of the Ace Research Institute says, “The Switch will surpass the Wii’s sales even without an upgrade and a sound hardware update plan would even allow the Switch to surpass the Nintendo DS handheld.”
Stay tuned to The Burn-In for future details about Nintendo’s plans to release a new Switch next year as they are officially announced.