The last few weeks have been pretty hectic for all Nintendo fans around the world. According to rumors and leaks, the Japanese company is preparing the ground for the release of the definitive, upgraded version of the Switch console – Nintendo Switch Pro. The new device is said to come with some minor upgrades in the specifications to ensure a better experience. It will also have a larger AMOLED screen, slightly better specifications to offer up to 4K resolution in dock mode. The leaks have indicated a pre-E3 launch that could be at any time in the next few days. The device has already appeared on several retailers from different countries, giving more credibility to its existence and near launch. But now the question is what Nintendo Switch Pro has in tow for the fans? Without further ado, let̵
Nintendo Switch Pro – Everything we know so far
Larger AMOLED screen
The first and most notable change with the Nintendo Switch Pro is definitely the new screen. According to reports, the new hybrid console will have a larger screen made by Samsung. The first rumors about this new panel appeared last year when Samsung started mass-producing a screen with suspicious specifications. Since then, tipsters have speculated that the orders were made by Nintendo, which was already preparing the new console variant.
The new screen will be larger than the current model. According to a report from Bloomberg (via), the new switch will have a 7-inch screen. This is larger than the standard switch’s 6.2-inch panel and Switch Lite 5.5-inch screen. Besides the size, the new screen will also be much better in terms of color and contrast. The new panel uses OLED technology, instead of the LCD screen in all switch variants. OLED is currently used in some of the best TVs and smartphones across the market. It provides real back levels and uses less energy depending on what is displayed on the screen. The panel is also much brighter and offers superb contrast levels. The portable mode experience will be significantly enhanced with this panel from Samsung.
The reports further say that the new Switch Pro will be able to offer 4K resolution. This is something that none of today’s variants offer. In fact, this will allow Nintendo to keep the console close to the competition. While Sony and Microsoft have already entered the “next generation” made of 4K resolutions, Ray Tracing, and 60 frames per second, Nintendo will follow the Switch for a couple of years to come. A new resolution will make some games look better, but there are points that we need to be aware of.
Apparently the new screen will not be 4K. This is not a big surprise since this can easily drain the console’s battery in a couple of hours, or even less. Apparently, the new screen will still offer a 720p HD resolution. Once you have connected the console to a 4K TV, you will play games in Ultra HD resolution.
The new console will probably also come with HDR. The term stands for High-Dynamic Range and greatly enhances the light and dark parts of the image. The implementation of this technology at stake introduces images that are more realistic and vivid than ever. Most OLED monitors offer HDR today, even LCD monitors have this technology implemented. So we can not see a reason why the new switch does not come with this technology, since it already has an upgraded OLED screen. The games will look much better with HDR processing.
Interestingly, HDR was not available at the start of the PS4 / Xbox One generation, but came later. Game developers worked to add this solution to their games, and today most titles have HDR implemented. We are not sure if previous Nintendo Switch titles will offer this solution, but it may open up for future titles. For now, while HDR rumors make sense, we need to digest this with a pinch of salt.
New NVIDIA chip with DLSS
Worth noting is that the games rendered with the new Nintendo Switch Pro will not offer native 4K resolution. While the new console is expected to provide some minor upgrades in terms of performance, it should not be enough for the original 4K rendering. Apparently, Nintendo will take an efficient route and render games in HD and then upscale them to a 4K TV.
The new console will use a new NVIDIA chip that offers 4K upscaling. This will allow Nintendo to use NVIDIA’s well-known DLSS (Deep Learning Super Sampling) technology. It’s a groundbreaking way to scale up graphics to look better than they are. In fact, DLSS is present on PCs with the latest RTX graphics card. It enables high resolution of certain games with Ray Tracing without sacrificing performance. Of course, we do not think that Pro will offer Ray Tracing, but DLSS to reach 4K resolution seems to be very feasible.
With the use of technology, the games will look virtually 4K on a TV screen without sacrificing performance or making the games even bigger in size. The technology can also increase the frame rate and offer a smoother experience. Since today’s Switch models already use the NVIDIA Tegra chip series, we have plenty of reason to believe these rumors.
Dolby Digital 5.1 audio support
Rumors also suggest that Nintendo will provide Dolby Digital 5.1 support for the new Nintendo Switch. It will definitely improve the audio experience and increase the compatibility with certain audio fields in the market. It is unfortunate that we do not see more advanced sound technologies coming this time.
How does the console stand against the PS5 or Xbox Series S / X?
The answer is quite simple, the console is not placed in the same category. In fact, sales of the current Switch models suggest that the company does not have much to worry about at the moment. Even in terms of availability, the Switch models are much more accessible than the weary devices of the PS5 or Xbox Series X. Nintendo has already stated that it is not concerned with the next generation of consoles.
While the console may offer better processing power, it will not hit what some consider to be the “next generation”. But still, Nintendo’s Switch game portfolio is much different. And also, some will continue to buy it due to the presence of Nintendo exclusive. Everyone is excited about Breath of the Wild 2, and it’s just coming to Nintendo’s console, as usual.
Nintendo Switch Pro – is this really the console’s new name?
We’ve been used to calling Nintendo’s new console refresh Nintendo Switch Pro. However, this name has not been confirmed yet. This makes sense since this moniker is quite popular today due to its presence in the smartphone market. Apple uses it, Sony uses it, everyone uses it, and Nintendo will probably stick with it.
We can not see a reason why Nintendo calls it Nintendo Switch 2. At this point, this name will be very confusing. The new console is more a variant of the existing Switch generation than a new step forward. For that reason, the Nintendo Switch Pro makes much more sense, especially when it’s a variant that carries “Lite” moniker. The company could also use Nintendo Switch XL, or Switch Plus but let’s stick to Switch Pro for now.
Release date and possible availability
Rumor has it that the Nintendo Switch Pro will be official in June. However, things look a bit sketchy today. In May, many rumors suggested the console’s major revelation on June 3. But the date has passed and the console did not show up. Of course, many e-commerce platforms listed the game during the first week of June, suggesting that it really comes this month.
The strongest rumors suggest a Pre-E3 release, which means that the console will be announced before June 12. Since Nintendo has a new Direct event scheduled for June 15, it will allow publishers to showcase some titles that will benefit from the new console. We also expect the Japanese company to finally show more about The Legend of Zelda Breath of the Wild 2 and use it to push Switch Pro forward.
According to rumors, the new console will be announced in June, but it will not be available until October. Like most of the console manufacturers, Nintendo is aiming for the “holiday season”. This is when the company expects to sell more units of the new console. Pre-orders will probably start several months before that date. The most optimistic rumors suggest the availability between September and October this year.
How much does the Nintendo Switch Pro cost?
The unit was recently built by a French dealer with a price tag of 399 euros. This confirmed some rumors suggesting that the new Pro will be a bit more expensive than the standard switch which is available at around 299 euros. Given the upgrades and the “more expensive” nature of OLED panels, we have enough reason to believe that the newer model will be more expensive. Some rumors claim that Pro will replace the current Switch model in the market. Nintendo will discontinue the standard variant and continue to sell only the Pro and Lite options. Of course, this has not yet been confirmed. According to a report from NikkeiAsia, Nintendo has recently increased production of the Switch variant, which does not make sense if the company plans to discontinue this model. There is still the possibility that the company will continue to sell all three variants at the same time for a while, and then will phase out the current model gradually.
Are you excited about Nintendo Switch Pro?
Considering all the rumored specifications and features that come with the new console, the big question is, are Nintendo fans really happy with the new model? Does that justify an upgrade for those with a vanilla model? These are questions that only the launch itself will clarify. So far, what are your expectations and impressions about the possible console? What are the improvements you want to see? More storage, more resolution, more processing power? Leave a comment below.