A cheap Nintendo Switch model is reportedly being planned, in order to make the console more affordable and bring it to more players. Nintendo is reportedly looking to ensure that everyone can own a Switch in the future, which means that the company will potentially create a cheaper model with more cash-strapped consumers in mind. The report comes after speculation that the company is looking to release a Nintendo Switch Mini in 2019.
The news comes from the Japanese publication Sankei (via NintendoSoup), which featured a comment from Nintendo President Shuntaro Furukawa discussing the company’s strategies to increase Switch sales. According to Sankei, Furukawa commented in a recent strategy briefing that “(Nintendo) will create the demand in order to have each person own their very own Nintendo Switch.”
This comment indicates that Nintendo is either looking to commit to a price drop for the Switch, which seems unlikely considering its continued strong sales, or it’s looking to create a more affordable model of the console. The company is no stranger to employing this strategy, with its handheld consoles having previously received similar stripped-back versions, such as the 2DS.
According to the report, Furukawa also suggested that this cheaper Nintendo Switch would go on to replace the 3DS, as sales of the handheld continue to decline. It has been suggested that the Nintendo Switch Mini would be a handheld-only console, with it not being able to be displayed in TV mode unlike the standard Switch, so this would make sense.
Considering that Nintendo is bringing series to the Switch such as Pokemon and Animal Crossing, which largely remained handheld-exclusive, it’s feasible that the company is looking to replace the 3DS. By releasing a budget Switch, many of those who have yet to pick up the console would undoubtedly be inclined to do so. According to Nikkei, the as-yet-unannounced Nintendo Switch Mini could launch as early as mid-2019. This follows news that Nintendo has ramped down its sales expectations for the Switch, suggesting that the company is looking to ramp up momentum once again.