Enlarge /. Ars & # 39; Kyle Orland tries out the Nintendo Switch in portable mode.
Nintendo's next switch hardware revision has long been rumored, but details of what to expect from a possible "Switch Pro" finally solidified on Wednesday thanks to an apparent leak from its screen supplier.
Bloomberg Japan leads the way, pointing to Samsung as the source for Switch's next type of panel: a 7-inch OLED panel currently valued at 720p resolution, "Internal Affairs". In the meantime, other Nintendo hardware assemblers will receive the panels "around July".
For size comparisons, the current standard Nintendo Switch uses a 6.2-inch 720p LED panel, while the 2019 Nintendo Switch Lite downsized its LED panel to 5.5 inches (but also has a resolution of 720p).
How could "Pro" get to 4K?
Such a schedule would enable Nintendo to reveal the hardware "this year" and "support (switch) demand in time for the holidays," reports Bloomberg. Whether that means a new, bigger Nintendo Switch would hit store shelves by the end of the year, however, wasn't fully confirmed by the report.
The report also did not clarify exactly how the internals of the system could be improved, but did identify a key characteristic: an impairment of "4K graphics associated with televisions". This seems to confirm that a new switch model will continue to use its hybrid "home-and-portable" gimmick.
How can a "Switch Pro" jump to 4K resolution, especially when the handheld version stays locked at 720p? Bloomberg's report doesn't speculate. In the meantime, we're wondering if the TV dock might be updated to include additional processing chips (using a "split motherboard" suggestion, similar to the Xbox Series X / S and PlayStation 5), and / or whether switch SoC maker Nvidia has all the DLSS-like tricks it can add to neatly upscale standard switch games at 4K resolution.
In either case, Nintendo has a limited history of mid-generation console updates that improve older software. Portable systems like Game Boy Color, DSi, and "New" Nintendo 3DS have all been able to apply processing improvements to software. However, this required specific compatibility in every game – in contrast to, for example, a general increase in 4K resolution for every Switch game is conceivable.
The report also fails to clarify whether a larger Switch will remain compatible with existing, detachable Joy-Con controllers, or whether Nintendo may launch a larger pair that matches the base hardware of the new larger Switch. (The big hands among the Ars Technica staff would appreciate the latter.)
Back in February, Nintendo announced to shareholders that Switch was in the "middle" of its life cycle, suggesting continued support for 4 to 5 years, while the company gave a vague assurance that new versions of Switch will not be "anytime soon." "to be announced. Earlier rumors of a "Switch Pro" didn't emerge until early 2019, but those hissed, and only Switch Lite eventually emerged from this pool of rumored hardware updates.