Lighter, smaller, less expensive, and with slightly longer battery life: the handheld-only Nintendo Switch Lite is due September 20, 2019 in yellow, grey or turquoise and at US$199 (approx. €199, £179), with a special edition launching shortly before "Pokémon Sword and Shield" in November.
Two and a half years after debuting the Nintendo Switch, a hybrid console that could be plugged into TVs or played in a portable configuration, Nintendo is to launch a handheld-only Switch Lite.
Measuring 3.6in high, 8.2in long, and .55in deep (9.1cm x 20.8cm x 1.4cm), the Switch Lite is smaller than the Switch (4in x 9.4in x .55in / 10.2cm x 23.9cm x 13.9cm with Joy-Cons attached).
That console housing also contains a smaller capacitive touch screen -- 5.5in instead of 6.2in -- though both screens maintain a 1280 x 720 resolution.
Similarly, at approximately .61 lbs / 275g it's lighter than the original .88 lbs / 398g model.
Aside from portability and price, another area where the Switch Lite has been improved is its battery life, with Nintendo of America estimating 3 to 7 hours life instead of the old 2.5 to 6.5 hours.
That's dependent on activity, though still equates to approximately 4 hours of "The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild" play instead of 3 hours on the first system.
In addition, four separate directional buttons under the left-hand joystick control have been replaced by a single, more traditional d-pad.
As the Switch Lite's controllers are integrated into the portable console's housing, it does away with the older Switch's TV mode and tabletop mode.
Accordingly, it's going to work natively with all Nintendo Switch games that support the Switch's handheld mode.
Those that don't have that mode can still be operated on the Switch Lite, but through the use of a compatible wireless controller which, now independent from the Switch Lite, will need its own dedicated charging apparatus.
Force feedback rumble, detachable controllers, and the InfraRed motion camera are other features dropped during the scale-down.
Local wireless play for up to eight players and access to online multiplayer via the Nintendo Switch Online subscription scheme remain available.
Two months after the Switch Lite arrives, a special light grey Zacian and Zamazenta Edition, named after the new legendary Pokémon from "Pokémon Sword and Shield," will be made available.
It sports cyan and magenta buttons with illustrations of the two Pokémon creatures on its back panel.
With the Switch Lite set for September 20, the Zacian and Zamazenta Edition launches November 8, ahead of a "Pokémon Sword and Shield" debut on November 15.
A Nintendo Switch Lite had been anticipated since March 2019, and it follows a pattern of product line diversification seen in previous Nintendo consoles such as the Game Boy Advance's SP and Micro editions, the Nintendo DS's Lite and DSi models, and Nintendo 3DS siblings the 2DS, New 3DS XL, and New 2DS XL.
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