It’s time to speculate about new Nintendo hardware - truly my favorite thing to do on video game forums. You literally never know what they’re going to do until that first leak. Nintendo hardware is unlike any other and it’s fun to try to anticipate their strategies.
Here’s my predictions as far as what the new model will be like:
The dimesions for the new device will be identical to the old one.
They will add a scaler in the hardware for 4k output. The max framebuffer for video games will still be 1080p, but they will add a traditional 4k upscaler similar to what is found on the Xbox One S or your 4k TV.
They will add a 720p LED screen that is capable of HDR and also add HDR support in docked mode.
They will replace the GPU with a smaller one that is more effecient but similar in power to the current GPU. Games will continue to run at the same resolution they have always had with possibly a slight bump in performance for dynamic res games. The more efficent GPU will draw less power in handheld mode, thus increasing battery life.
The dock, chasis, and joycons of the new model will be different in color (maybe white?) than the current model and any currently available joycons indicate its “premium” status.
It will sell at $300.
The current model will get a price drop of around $50-$100 and be sold without a dock included from now on.
So, these are all predictions I’m pulling out of thin air. But I do see this model very much as an Xbox One S type upgrade for the Switch, but without phasing out the current model. Rather, I think they’ll just sell both models - a premium HDR model with a dock, and an original model without a dock.
I don’t see them increasing resolution on the screen or max output in docked mode, changing the CPU, or increasing the storage capacity at all. These would all be unnecessarily expensive for Nintendo. The HDR screen, as it is, would still be a very huge leap for such a conservative company.
All the 4K output predictions you’re seeing on other forums sound totally implausible in my humble opinion. The tech just isn’t there yet for Nintendo to do that and make the profit they expect to on hardware sales.
Removing the Dock from the orignal model will lower the price to allow them to target parents of children who want the system for Pokemon - a huge part of Nintendo’s strategy. The 3DS family of systems currently fills that role, but it will also receive a price drop coinciding with this new hardware, and eventually be phased out by the end of 2019.
Dockless og Switch will be the “handheld successor” going forward. I think this is a fairly conservative and safe strategy for the company. What do you think?