For those who were interested in getting the newly refreshed Nintendo Switch console, the updated model is on sale now in stores and online.
Normally, this wouldn’t be a huge deal, as it is just a console refresh. There’s no difference in price, appearance or main functionality. The main difference between the newly-released Switch and the original base Switch is the power management and battery life. The originally released Nintendo Switch had an average battery life of between two to six hours total playtime, but the newly updated model averages around four to nine hours total playtime, which is a significant improvement in power performance.
It could perhaps be a little difficult to distinguish between the two systems if you’re specifically looking for the new Switch, but there are noticeable differences to distinguish the two models. The brand new model is being shipped/sold in the solid red package (See image on the right), as opposed to the original release packaging seen on the left. Nintendo also uses the model number HAC-001(-01) to denote the newly refreshed Switch which can help narrow down to the correct console.
Nintendo has been relatively quiet about this newly updated console, granted there aren’t very many other new things coming with it. It’s still shipping with the same old TV dock, Joy-Cons (hopefully without any stick drift), Joy-Con controller adapter, and the rest. There haven’t been any particularly official announcements (at least globally, Nintendo of Japan did tweet about the new updated version of the console) of this new Switch model, which was slated to start selling at the beginning of August.
Nintendo has been focusing mostly on marketing for the Nintendo Switch Lite, a slightly more affordable version of the Nintendo Switch designed specifically for handheld play.
Should consumers be selling their old, primary-release Switches in favor of the new one? Only if the battery life matters to you that much, but it’s not expected to be a major selling point for the newly updated Switch. The battery optimization is still a major improvement, but in the overall scope of the system, it’s a minor addition to an already excellent console.
It still does everything the original Switch does, just for a little bit longer.