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It's something of an open secret that Nintendo has a new version of its hugely popular Switch console in development - a more-powerful model, we think, that will sit beside the original console of 2017 and its 2019-released handheld-only Lite sibling.
As VGC reports, the Taipei-based newspaper Economic Daily News has written that this next Switch - the New Nintendo Switch, literally, if its name follows the pattern of the 2DS/3DS family - will enter production in the coming months, and is targeting a release date in the first three months of 2021.
Economic Daily News claims that the new Switch will have an improved display, and improved interactivity - which may or may not be a subtle reference to better Joy-Cons. Please? Nintendo, if you get just one thing really, really right on the next Switch, fix the drift, yeah? That sure would represent improved interactivity. (Can you tell that one of mine has just started drifting? Uh.)
Nintendo had previously announced it wouldn't release a new Switch in 2020 - but it never said it wouldn't make one, this year. And it's not like the lack of a new model this year has hurt the Switch, at all - the console passed the Wii's lifetime sales in Japan back in March, and total units shifted on Nintendo's home turf now sit at over 12 million.
Worldwide, the Switch (including the Lite) is up to over 61 million units sold - putting it comfortably ahead of the Xbox One's estimated 50 million, but way behind the PlayStation 4's 110 million. That 61 million is also more than the Nintendo 64 and GameCube managed, combined.
Which is to say: the Switch is selling just fine, thanks (even with the widely reported issues affecting its controllers). Back to this new Switch, though, and the Taipei 'paper report cites manufacturers (of certain components for the console to come) as evidence that something big is coming up.
Now, with the next Nintendo Direct expected in early September (or, possibly, late August - it could be just days away), but the existing Switch models likely to be much in demand this, ahem, holiday season, I wouldn't anticipate any official reveal of this new model in 2020. It makes no sense for Nintendo to undermine its current hardware right before a huge gift-buying period. Then again, would the promise of a more powerful Switch make some gamers, ready to drop money on a PlayStation 5 or Xbox Series X, pause to see more of what Nintendo has in store? Maybe.
What I'm definitely not ruling out, though, is the announcement of some new hardware from Nintendo, in 2020. Call it a hunch, because that is mostly all it is. But there's a voice in my head right now that's saying the company has something else up its sleeves for Q4 - possibly in the vein of those 8- and 16-bit classic mini consoles it released a while back. We were told in 2018 that a N64 mini wasn't happening imminently - but 2018 was ages ago. At least 84 years. The trademark was filed, lest we forget, so let's see if anything comes of it... sooner or later.
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