Report: Nintendo Releasing “Upgraded” Switch Model In 2021

Report: Nintendo Releasing “Upgraded” Switch Model In 2021
Image: Nintendo

Back in March 2019, there was a rumour that Nintendo would be releasing two new models of the Switch, one a premium upgraded version, the other a cheaper successor to the 3DS. We certainly got the latter with the Switch Lite, but Bloomberg is now reporting that the former is still on track, and is due in 2021.

The report says this will be an “upgraded model of its Switch console”, and while it doesn’t go into specifics (particularly when it comes to specs, size or price) it adds that “the Kyoto-based company has looked into including more computing power and 4K high-definition graphics.”

It’s the second time this week an industry outlet has reported this news, following a similar story in Taiwan’s Economic Daily News.

On the one hand, this would be…weird? Chasing the high end of the market isn’t very Nintendo, and I don’t think anyone is clamouring to play Switch games in 4K, at least not enough to need a whole new console for it.

Then again, creating different models of hardware with different abilities is also very Nintendo, something the company has not just already done on the Switch, but also on everything from the DS (the DSi) to the Wii (ditching GameCube support and hardware ports) to the 3DS (the 2DS).

And with both the PS5 and Xbox Series X due soon, maybe they feel that a 4K upgrade and performance boost is just what the Switch needs to stay on top for a few more years.


  • I’ll believe it when I see it. I would be on board upgrading my old Switch if I could carry all my games and saves over AND if it improved games in some way like the PS4 pro does for PS4 games. Wouldn’t mind playing something like Breath of the Wild with 60 frames for example.

    • Agreed. I can only imagine 4K on Switch would come with horrible frame rates. Would much prefer higher performance at lower resolutions. I’m hoping whenever they release this iteration that it coincides with the sequel to BotW as that’s when I’m planning on getting one.

      • I also want to count this as an upvote.

        Seriously, why does Nintendo get a free pass with broken controllers still happening more than half way into their console’s life cycle?

        I don’t even play the Switch ‘that much’ compared to PS4/Xbox One (maybe 300-400 total hours over 3 years using not just the 1 joy con all the time) and I’ve had 2 joycons have drift.. That’s compared to PS4 where I’ve had to replace 1 controller which still works but games like Far Cry 5 and GTA 5 don’t register the R2 trigger working to its full degree (works fine in all other games) and the Xbox One which hasn’t had 1 controller fail thus far.

  • I think the most achievable way to get 4k out of a switch is either.

    A) Home Console Box (non portable Switch). Like we cany leave home any more and have roof top parties.

    B) A graphical dock like how laptops can thunderbolt into a GPU Box

    I think 4k resolution packs will need to be optional DLC from the store to keep game sizes down.

    I dont think 4K Mobile Switch would be achievable unless Nintendo is going to abandon their affordability family friendly business model and create a Premium skewe that’s priced like a mobile phone.

  • Any plans to allow me to play any of the Wii & WiiU content I already own?bThe downloaded titles? Even just the VC stuff? How about any of my 3DS content? (crickets)
    I’d be interested in an upgraded switch, but after buying consoles for 30+ years, and hoarding them to be able to play my older library, now that most platforms offer me at least some level of BC, (and Nintendo were soooo good at this , for a while) , I’m really not keen to plunge in and buy a whole other library that I can’t even carry some of over. I guess I’ll be seeing how they handle Switch BC on whatever platform comes next, then catch up with the must buy Switch titles then, but tbh as a Wii U owner , who bought most of the tentpole 1st party releases (and quite a few tent pegs) , there’s not a heap I’ve missed out on. Pokemon S/S, SM Odyssey, & a Zelda remake is all that springs to mind…

    • Why would they allow you to play your previously purchased games when they can just force you to buy them again!

      Its the Nintendo way!

      • But they’ve had some form here. One generation BC for all handhelds since the GBA (2 on the GBA if you count GB/GBC as separate gens), one gen BC for the wii to GC, and Wii U offering full disc BC AND the ability to import /transfer your entire Wii storage – with external HDD support.

        My VC library is pretty comprehensive. But I get your point. It’s valid. After finally buying every main home console SMB, Zelda, Metroid – NES-WiiU & amongst a tb of other stuff NES to Wii, going back to Wii VC , that they’d let me transfer over a gen – on the same box, with some fantastic controllers , and most every handheld main release game of same on the 3DS , and all those hundreds of other titles- I figured they’d eventually provide some plan going forward, for those with sizeable digital libraries.

        Til then, I’m clinging onto that WiiU. 🙂 I’ve been buying it again for 30 years. I can wait.

    • BC will be pretty good next gen, they signed a 10 year deal with Nvidia, and I don’t see them switching architecture from such a successful format. Depending on timing, we might even see third release at the tail end of 10 years.

  • I’m interested in this if only because it’s just about time we started hearing about the next mobile Monster Hunter and the beefier the hardware the closer it can be to MH: World.

  • People don’t go to the switch for power and performance. All this would do is allow for a few more down scaled ports of late current gen games

Show more comments

Log in to comment on this story!