Nintendo Switch Lite: Release Date, Price, Features & Details

Originally released back in March of 2017, the Nintendo Switch has gone on to sell 34.74 million units worldwide. In addition, the flagship games for the console, Legend of Zelda: Breath of the WildSuper Smash Brothers Ultimate, Mario OdysseyMario Kart 8, and Super Mario Party have all gone on to sell millions of units as well. Making the Japanese console a success in sales for the hardcore gamer audience and as a family played console. Beyond that, Nintendo has reconnected with third-party developers to have games made for their console which has expanded the console’s library to levels that the Wii-U was not close to hitting. Overall, these past two years have been very kind to the titan gaming company, and they don’t seem to be slowing down anytime soon. Stepping into the race is the just-announced Nintendo Switch Lite, the original Switch‘s, literal, little brother.


Like most updated console versions, the Nintendo Switch Lite will have some differences when compared to the original Nintendo Switch. The Switch Lite, much the like the Nintendo DS Lite/DSi, will be a smaller version of the original console. The new console is strictly focused on the aspect of “handheld” gaming. Being constructed smaller, Switch Lite will be more comfortable, lighter, and compactable when lugging it around from place to place. Unlike the original console which is bigger and clunkier.

In addition to its smaller size, the console will be one unit (you don’t have to worry about losing specific parts, convenient!). While the ‘Joycons’ on the Switch can be removed and used as separate controllers, that will not happen with the Switch Lite. This can be seen as a bit of a downgrade since the Switch Lite will not have ‘Bluetooth’ or ‘motion control’ ‘Joycons’ right off the bat. Consumers will have to purchase additional ‘Joycons’ to enjoy motion control games like Super Mario Party or Arms. However, players will appreciate the fact that with Switch Lite‘s built-in controllers there will be a solid ‘Directional Pad’ (D-Pad for short), instead of the ‘Directional Buttons’ that ‘Joycons’ come with. Also, Switch Lite will support external ‘Joycon’ controllers, ‘Switch-Pro’ controllers, and the ‘Poke-Ball Plus’ controller used for Let’s Go Pokemon: Eevee/Pikachu.

Unfortunately, focusing only on “handheld” gaming does have some more drawbacks for the console. Switch Lite will not feature television gameplay capability since it cannot be “docked” like the Switch is capable of doing. Also, the console will not have the ‘HD Rumble’ support or the ‘IR Camera’ built into the original Switch ‘Joycons.’ Though, it’ll still have Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and NFC support. Though don’t worry Nintendo fans, Switch Lite will be capable of playing all of the Nintendo games that you already own.

More information about the differences between the two consoles can be seen on Nintendo’s official website.

Special Editions

As Nintendo usually does with new console releases, Switch Lite will be getting a special Pokemon: Sword and Shield color scheme edition, as reported from Kotaku. It’s not confirmed yet that this special edition will be bundled with one of the two ‘Pokemon’ games, or that it’ll come with the games pre-loaded on the console, rather it just states that the console will have the color scheme of the two new legendary pokemon ‘Zacian’ and ‘Zamazenta’. This color scheme will feature a light gray frame, cyan, and magenta buttons/joysticks, and the two legendary pokemon depicted on the back. This special edition will be released, alongside the games, on November 8th for $199.99.

Original Switch Updated

Pikachu on a Switch

Kris Cruz /

It seems that a bit of news was lost during the excitement of Nintendo announcing the new Sitch Lite. On the Japanese Nintendo website, they announced that the original Switch model, the one released back in 2017, is getting a pretty heavy upgrade to its battery life. This new version of the Switch is reported to have a battery life that clocks in between 4.5 to 9.0 hours. Though, this extended battery life does depend on the game that gamers play. Some games, like Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, requires more battery power to play in the handheld form. Still, this battery life upgrade is quite staggering since the original Switch model only had a battery life of 2.5 to 6.5 hours. Also, this improved battery life beats out the battery life on the Switch Lite, which only clocks a battery life of 3.0 to 7.0 hours. Though, this is due to the Switch Lite being a strict handheld console and a smaller console as well.

These types of upgrades to consoles are quite common, the only downside is that no other upgrades are happening to this new version of the Switch. This updated version will be releasing this year, 2019, for the original price of the Switch, $299.99.

The Nintendo Switch Lite will be hitting store shelves September 20th and comes in three different colors: yellow, gray, and turquoise.  The price of this console on release will be $199.99. The new wave of “handheld” gamers is upon us.

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