Nintendo is releasing the Switch Lite in just a few weeks and there really isn’t a great reason to buy it, but I’m going to. Among a number of reasons we’ll cover in this article, if you already have a “regular” Switch there really doesn’t seem to be and great selling point for the Switch Lite. But already so many people are ready to fork over $200 for one.
We’ll start off by just mentioning the physical differences between the hardware of the Switch and Switch Lite. The biggest noticeable change with the Switch Lite is the removal of the Joy Con. The Lite will have it’s controllers built into the system itself, and will be altered slightly from its bigger brother by adding a true d-pad. This real d-pad instead of the Switch’s circular buttons is the first major change that seems to be getting fans excited. The other main difference in the new console to note is its smaller size overall. The screen is down from 6.2” to 5.5” but maintains the same resolution. The weight is obviously smaller as well, down to 9.8 ounces from 14.1. The smaller system will also continue to have motion controls although the library of games that it can play will be limited to those that support handheld mode.
So with all of the major differences out of the way, let’s go through and list off the disadvantages that the Switch Lite has to its bigger brother. It can’t connect to a TV, it doesn’t have removable Joy Con, it has a smaller screen, and it can only play games compatible with handheld mode. So that seems like a pretty big deterrent from purchasing a system, right? Well for the laundry list of features the Switch Lite doesn’t have, it got everything right that it needed to.
The reasons, then, for buying a Switch Lite may not make a lot of logical sense, but seem to be widely held nonetheless. From a purely aesthetic point of view the Lite has two new beautiful colors: turquoise and yellow. These fun system colors are enough to get a lot of people interested in the console for starters but the rest of the reasons actually have to do with shortcomings of the original Switch.
The Switch was designed from the beginning to be the perfect all-in-one console blurring the line between portable and home console. In order to do this, however, the console had to make compromises to both of those goals. A significant amount of Switch owners, myself included, have used the console almost exclusively in docked mode for its entire life. Part of the reason for this is the fact that the system is just kind of bulky when being used in handheld mode. In addition to this the Joy Con on the Switch have a noticeable amount of movement when connected into the sides of the console. Handheld mode on the original Switch feels more like an interesting feature that could be used but really isn’t practical or comfortable for many. While there is definitely a large group of Switch owners that love using the console in handheld mode, many who are unhappy with that feature seem to be interested in the Lite as a possible solution. The addition of an actual d-pad only adds to this interest.
In the reasons I explain next there will be some personal opinion, but I have seen these reasons echoed by many Switch owners online.
I, like most Switch owners, love my console and have built up quite a large library of games that I love just as much. I often want to play in handheld mode either relaxing on my bed or in a coffee shop between work, or even on campus at university when I have some free time. The reason I never do boils down to the Switch just been too large for me to consider it a true portable system. The DS family hit the size of handheld consoles perfectly in my opinion, and the Switch Lite is moving very close to this form factor. My Switch has spent its entire life in its dock as a home console despite the fact that there are multiple use cases that I want to play my library on the go. Although it might seem a bit nit-picky, the Switch is just a little too large, and the Joy Con are just a little too loose for me to be willing to bring it along with me to use portably. The Switch Lite seems like the perfect solution to this.
While anyone who has a Switch and enjoys using it in handheld mode has absolutely no reason to invest in the Lite, myself and anyone else who has been dissatisfied with the Switch in handheld mode finally have a solution. The Switch Lite promises to provide a sturdy and small handheld console that’s perfect to add to your original Switch while keeping access to your downloadable game library. With this feature of accessing any purchased games on more than one console, Nintendo has made the Lite the perfect companion to your Switch. Additionally, if you’re purchasing a Switch Lite for kids you won’t have to purchase all of their games a second time.
So ultimately if you don’t have a problem with the Switch’s handheld mode right now, there is absolutely no reason to buy the Switch Lite. But if you’ve always wished your Switch was more tailored for a handheld mode and you like pretty colors, get ready to give Nintendo another $200. In all seriousness, though, this price is extremely reasonable for what you’re getting considering the New 3DS XL was the same price for a lot less console. And, if you’re buying the Switch Lite for its best use-case, as a handheld companion to your original Switch, you don’t have to worry about paying any more than the entry $200 as your whole library will port over with your account just fine.
It’s exactly the same console except smaller and with less features. So if you already have a Switch, there’s no large reason or selling point to buy the Switch Lite, but man am I excited to spend a cool two hundred on it. And by the looks of the community so far, so are a lot of other Switch owners.
While no projected sales for the Switch Lite have been released it does appear between kids and die-hard Nintendo fans there will absolutely be a market for this console. Many are already predicting that it’s being brought into the world to be the successor to the DS family, which has been around since 2004. Only time will tell how well this console performs, though, and it’s likely that sales data will ultimately decide whether or not the Lite takes the torch from the 3DS and 2DS lineup currently being supported by Nintendo.
Are you excited for the Switch Lite to be released in a few weeks? Are you planning on picking one up? If so, tell us your reasoning in the comments below!
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