Nintendo unveils 'disappointing' upgraded OLED Switch console

Gaming giant Nintendo has announced a new addition to its Switch series of devices with an upgraded version of the console due to be released in October.

The new edition has a 7-inch OLED screen, a wider stand than the current version and a dock with a wired LAN port. It also has 64GB of storage, up from the current 32GB, and an enhanced audio system.

But contrary to speculation on the internet suggesting a 'Switch Pro' 4K version was imminent around the time of the E3 gaming convention, this new version has no major internal changes. That's prompted some including Tom Warren, senior editor at The Verge, to brand the new console "disappointing".

"Rumours had suggested a new Nvidia chip, 4K output to TVs, and more. The reality is same internals, a new OLED display, and a bump to storage. The disappointing part is no significant bump to battery life," he wrote.

Serkan Toto, founder of the Kantan Games consultancy, told Reuters it is a great upgrade for handheld gamers, "but the general expectation was for the new device to be significantly more powerful".

The two current versions of the Switch - the original hybrid dockable/portable along with the handheld Switch Lite - have sold 85 million units to date, with sales boosted during COVID-19 pandemic lockdowns.

The Switch OLED is currently available for pre-order from online retailers in Aotearoa at NZ$639 but there has been no official confirmation of the price from Nintendo itself.

This makes it more expensive than the next generation Xbox Series S, but cheaper than the more powerful Xbox Series X and Playstation 5 consoles.

The latter two have been hard to find in New Zealand due to the availability of components for semiconductors causing shortages worldwide.