Last week, Nintendo announced the Switch Lite, which is a smaller, more durable, and cheaper portable gaming console priced at just $199. Today, Nintendo has revealed another new member of the family: a refreshed version of the original Switch.
Nintendo doesn’t specifically call out what internal changes have been made, but it notes that the new and improved Switch has runtimes that increase from between 2.5 to 6.5 hours to a more impressive 4.5 to 9 hours. That’s a rather dramatic uplift for a gaming system that is primarily used on-the-go, and one that will be highly appreciated by gamers. For reference, the new Nintendo Switch Lite has battery life rated between 3 to 7 hours.
The only people that likely won’t be too happy are those who recently purchased a standard Nintendo Switch and wouldn’t mind an extra few hours of battery life. For example, Nintendo says that you can now play Zelda: Breath of the Wild for 5.5 hours on the new Switch versus just 3 hours on the old model.
The old [standard] Nintendo Switch carried the model designation HAC-001, while the new one is labeled HAC-001(-01). It’s quite possible that this is the updated Switch model that we came across earlier this month in an FCC filing.
The filing showed that the new Switch would gain a new SoC and revised NAND storage. Those changes combined with a [potentially] larger battery could account for the increased battery life.