Long await rumors of smaller, cheaper Nintendo Switch hardware were confirmed today with the announcement of the Nintendo Switch Lite. The biggest questions everyone has is when and how much. The Switch Lite will be available on September 20 at a price point of $199.99. It will be available in three separate colors; Yellow, Gray, and Turquoise.
There will also be a special edition releases for Pokemon Sword and Shield called the Zacian and Zamazenta Edition which will
include cyan and magenta buttons and illustrations of the two new Legendary Pokemon, Zacian and Zamazenta. This edition will also feature a $199.99 price point and will be available on November 8th.
The Nintendo Switch Lite will feature a 720p 5.5-inch screen as opposed to the original Switch screen size of 6.2-inches. The Switch Lite will also lose the ability to connect to a TV via USB-C and HDMI. This will mean that the Switch Lite will be sold purely as a handheld, which Nintendo alluded to before the release of the Switch when they said the Switch would be a platform of hardware and not just a singular console.
The general layout of the console has not been changed, although the permanently attached JoyCons have lost their rumble feature and IR motion sensors. Although, standard JoyCon controllers can still be connected to the Switch Lite as with a regular Switch. The biggest addition to this console is a traditional D-Pad over the four smaller buttons previously featured on the JoyCon controllers.
Nintendo of America president Doug Bowser confirmed, however, that Nintendo has no plans to include the Switch Lite d-pad on the traditional JoyCon controllers. When asked by CNET, Bowser said: “There are no plans or nothing to announce, in terms of further variations of Joy-Con.”
The Switch Lite lacks some features from the base model Switch which will cause some software not to be compatible. Only titles that support handheld mode. The Switch Lite does boast a 20-30% better battery life, however. Nintendo has stated they are planning a transfer feature that will allow you to switch between the base model and Switch Lite, although they have yet to detail how that will work.