Nintendo Officially Announces The Switch Lite - Is It Worth Getting?

The cheaper price tag's trade for less functionality may be a deal breaker for some people.
The Switch Lite is officially here, a smaller and cheaper version of the OG Switch.
The Switch Lite is officially here, a smaller and cheaper version of the OG Switch. Nintendo

After months of rumors, hearsay and other supposed leaks, Nintendo finally announced its newest hardware: the Nintendo Switch Lite, a smaller, cheaper handheld that’s built exclusively around handheld play.

The announcement came with a trailer, which showcases what the device will look like and gives us an early look at its feature set. Check it out below to see what the fuss is all about, and find out after if it’s actually worth getting.

Like previous reports have already mentioned, the Nintendo Switch Lite comes in a smaller package than its big brother and predecessor, the original Switch. The most significant departure is the fact that it did away with the Joy-cons, fusing the controls together with the main console to form a unibody Switch. It’s also much more whimsical, with the Switch Lite being offered in three different colors: Grey, Yellow and Turquoise.

It’s a lot cheaper, too, compared to the original Switch, but that’s to be expected when you remove a lot of features (more on this later). The Switch Lite will launch in September for $199, a hundred bucks less than the original Switch. The price, even though cheaper, could be a hit or miss with some people, as the Switch Lite has a few caveats and restrictions you should know about.

First off, the Switch Lite is designed to be play exclusively in handheld mode. You can not dock this thing to a TV using an existing Switch dock, and there’s no actual way we know of to connect it to a TV in any form. While some may be happy to know that it’s exclusively made for handheld mode and the Joy-cons are fused to the console, this does not bode well if you ever find the controls messing up, like stick drift and other problems. Since there’s no more need for it, the kickstand has also been removed.

You do, however, get an improved battery life, according to Nintendo’s exclusive on The Verge. There are no specifics as to how improved, but we can gather that this mostly stems from the fact that it is a single unit now instead of the modular Switch.

While I don’t see the reason for getting this at all over a regular Switch, it may be a good console to own if you’re just looking to play handheld titles. Since it comes in a smaller package and is considerably cheaper, the target market looks like those who don’t own a Switch yet and are in the market for another handheld, since the 3DS is on its last legs.

If there is one thing to take away from this, though, is that I just think it’s plain wrong to call it a Switch anymore, since the whole ‘Switch’ component – the Joy-cons sliding in and out, the console getting docked or not – was removed in favor of a more traditional handheld style. To each his own, I guess, and you can share your thoughts with us in the comments down below.

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