With the Nintendo Switch Lite arriving this September, it seems likely that a more technically sophisticated version of the hybrid console — the Switch Pro — will hit the market next year. The Game Boy Advance SP and New 3DS indicate that Nintendo is bound to release another new and improved version of the Switch at some point, and 2020 seems like a great time to launch new hardware before competitors Sony and Microsoft dominate the conversation with their respective offerings in the fall.
Though Nintendo of America President Doug Bowser recently stated in an interview with CNET that the Switch Lite will be the company’s only new hardware offering this holiday, another Switch could arrive as soon as March or April. The following are a few features that the inevitable Switch Pro should include whenever it might launch.
Switch Pro Features Wish List | More storage
The Nintendo Switch’s meager 32 GB of internal memory makes owning a SD card essential for anyone looking to play more than five or six games on the system. Some titles like L.A. Noire and Doom, which require 29 GB and 23 GB respectively, are impossible to purchase digitally without having external storage. Should Nintendo want to encourage people to continue buying software and appease third-party publishers to continue porting titles to its hardware, it would be wise to offer 128 GB Switch models in the near future. Seeing as how the upcoming Witcher 3: Wild Hunt will take 32 GB on its own, more memory just makes sense.
Switch Pro Features Wish List | A better screen
While the Switch’s current 720p resolution LCD screen isn’t terrible, switching to a OLED display will help make colors pop better and improve the console’s brightness when in handheld mode. A report by the Wall Street Journal last year indicates that Nintendo had considered this at some point, so the inclusion of a more impressive screen shouldn’t come as much of a surprise whenever a new version is announced. While the company is at it, it could offer a larger display to appeal to people who may be disappointed with the Lite and standard version’s respective 5.5-inch and 6.2-inch screens.
Higher resolutions while docked are also welcome, especially considering how the next Xbox and PlayStation will likely to offer 4K gaming to the masses. Resolutions above 1080p may actually entice people to put off their purchase of Sony or Microsoft’s offerings in 2020 in favor of upgrading their Switches or jumping in on the sensation for the first time, as they may not have televisions or home theater equipment that can take full advantage of the generational leap.
Switch Pro Features Wish List | Better battery life
A new display could directly result in longer battery life when in handheld mode, too. Though the Lite does promise to extend the machine’s life by 30 minutes, three to seven hours of portable playtime is hardly enough to enjoy games like Skyrim or Dragon Quest Builders on the go, as these only last a little over three hours when in airplane mode. A long-lasting battery is essential with any portable piece of technology. Nintendo has made an effort to improve the Switch’s handheld longevity through the Lite, but a more drastic improvement should arrive by way of the Pro. Seven to 10 hours, for instance, seems more ideal.
Switch Pro Features Wish List | More horsepower
It’s obvious that higher resolutions and frame rates require better horsepower. The Switch Pro probably won’t be powerful enough to support 4K gaming, but it should entice more third-party studios to port their games to the hybrid. Reducing the technological disparity between Nintendo’s console and the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One may make it easier for developers to translate their software without sacrificing gameplay or graphics. This could also help remove the perception that Switch titles are watered down versions of their counterparts on Sony and Microsoft platforms. More horsepower may be a lot to ask this early on, but it’ll certainly give Nintendo’s machine better ability to sustain itself throughout 2020 and beyond.
Switch Pro Features Wish List | An Ethernet port
An Ethernet port for the next Switch seems like a no-brainer considering the system’s launch of an online service last fall. Multiplayer-centric titles like Super Smash Bros Ultimate, Fortnite, and Tetris 99 practically demand a hardwired option if wireless services at home are finicky. Including this feature in the Switch Pro could go so far as to pave the way for Xbox Game Pass in the future. For now, an Ethernet port would incentive owners who haven’t yet purchased the system’s online service to hop in on the bandwagon, as they won’t have to constantly fear about losing their connections.
Switch Pro Features Wish List | More services
The introduction of more services are welcome alongside the Switch Pro. As of the time of this writing, the Switch has yet to receive Netflix, Spotify, and Amazon Prime Video apps, which is nothing short of bizarre considering how virtually each one of the system’s direct and indirect competitors included these services shortly after launch. Hulu and YouTube are nice, but hardly comprise the suite of options available on Xbox One and PlayStation 4. The announcement of new services could compliment the Switch Pro’s debut nicely.
With new consoles arriving by way of both Sony and Microsoft, it’ll be interesting to see how Nintendo manages to maintain its popularity in 2020. If the Switch Pro includes the features above, it may stand a chance against the competition.