Nintendo may launch the next-gen Switch by September this year despite global chip shortage
While on the one hand, Nintendo is struggling to meet Switch demand due to the global chip shortage, on the other, the company is reportedly looking to start production of the next-gen Switch as soon as July this year. Industry sources familiar with the matter have revealed that Nintendo may begin assembly of the next Switch in the next few months, and it might showcase the upcoming console ahead of the E3 conference in June.
According to Bloomberg, the next-gen Nintendo Switch will likely be priced higher than the original, and it will be sold alongside the affordable Switch Lite. The current model, however, will be phased out over time. The report further adds that Nintendo plans to ramp up production to a peak in the last quarter of 2021, despite the global semiconductor shortage.
Talking about the upcoming console, Bloomberg analyst Matthew Kanterman said, “An upgraded Switch can be extremely valuable in extending the lifecycle of the platform. Both Sony and Microsoft have had success with mid-cycle upgrades as a means to drive growth from live services and, as this becomes a greater driver for Nintendo, not fragmenting the user base across different platforms would be advantageous.”
As far as the specifications of the next-gen Nintendo Switch are concerned, Bloomberg notes that the device will feature a 7-inch OLED display from Samsung and a faster GPU from NVIDIA with support for 4K output. Due to the premium components, chip shortage, and rising labor costs in China, the next-gen console will likely be priced higher than $299. While we don’t have any information about the final retail price just yet, Nintendo’s suppliers expect their per-unit revenue with the company to increase. The suppliers have also expressed confidence in their ability to meet Nintendo’s orders despite the ongoing chip shortage, as their production lines are better prepared for any potential component shortages.