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Nintendo Switch Reportedly 'Barely' Halfway Through Its Life Cycle

Bullet Club

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Nintendo Switch Reportedly 'Barely' Halfway Through Its Life Cycle

3 more years! 3 more years!

The Nintendo Switch is apparently "barely in the middle" of its life cycle, according to reports from Nintendo's latest investor Q&A.

That fact was reported by investment advisor David Gibson, who attended the Q&A following Nintendo's latest earnings report and explained that Nintendo representatives had said it was, "Barely in the middle of the switch cycle, no change to that view."

The Nintendo Switch is just over three years old, which would put the expected end of its life cycle at around 2023 at least. That thinking matches up with Nintendo's other recent successes - Nintendo Wii was released in 2006 and followed by Wii U in 2012, while Nintendo DS was released in 2004, with 3DS coming 7 years later in 2011.

This doesn't necessarily discount an upgraded model of Switch arriving during that time - several Nintendo consoles have seen updates during their life cycle, and we've already seen Switch Lite - but we know that there are no plans for a rumoured Switch Pro model in 2020.

This news isn't a huge surprise - Switch and its software continues to sell well, with April seeing new records broken for hardware sales, and Animal Crossing: New Horizons selling over 11 million copies in 11 days. It's been enough for EA - which once said its players don't want games on Switch - to announce that it will release multiple games for the console this year.

In January, Nintendo explained: "we believe it is important to continue to communicate the appeal of both Nintendo Switch systems and expand the installed base."

Source: IGN
 

StormCell

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Yes, yes, I can see the writing on the wall for Nintendo'ers like me... From here onward could be similar to the Wii. Maybe third party support will remain somewhat strong, but it's going to basically be riding on Nintendo's ability to eventually produce more games for the system.

I don't disagree with keeping Switch alive for 7 years, I just don't agree with it being the flagship hardware beyond 2021.
 

StormCell

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Yeah, but just because the product is selling out today doesn't mean you shouldn't plan on carrying that fire over onto your newest product. If I were Nintendo, I would exit the generational model and adapt to a more rapid hardware release schedule.

But nope. They're just waiting for those component prices to hit the floor while this is still the best hybrid game in town so they can make bank on that hardware profit. I consider it short-sighted.
 

Humdinger

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Is there any reliable confirmation that they're even working on a Switch Pro? Or is it all just rumor and speculation?
 

NeoIkaruGAF

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As much as I like the Switch, the platform needs games to survive and this year already is looking pretty bare in terms of big releases.

Once the new consoles release I just can’t see devs going the extra mile to make an even more compromised version of their games for the Switch. This thing needs a hardware upgrade by mid-2021 at the latest. Releasing it in late 2021 would mean missing on possible ports of big Christmas heavy hitters.

I really hope Nintendo is playing dumb as usual and they’re actually in the final stages of designing a more powerful Switch. Power equality is impossible with that design, but they can’t keep up their success with just indies and first-party games. History has more than shown that they can’t.
 
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Woopah

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Yes, yes, I can see the writing on the wall for Nintendo'ers like me... From here onward could be similar to the Wii. Maybe third party support will remain somewhat strong, but it's going to basically be riding on Nintendo's ability to eventually produce more games for the system.

I don't disagree with keeping Switch alive for 7 years, I just don't agree with it being the flagship hardware beyond 2021.

I'm curious, what is it about Switch being the flagship hardware in 2022 that you don't agree with?
 

DadEggs

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i havent been interested in a switch game since......golf story it think? no wait. wargroove. not looking forward to 3 more years.

do better nintendo.


i bet itll be 3 more years of switch, 1.5 years of only the current gen switch
 
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jts

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Corona is surely going to slow down the pipeline. Strategy-wise, there's a lot of uncertainty right now that can be at least a bit cleared up in the next 6-9 months, and then there's the work restrictions and their impact on roadmaps. I can see Nintendo squeezing every single release and space them out the most they can to prolong hardware sales momentum, dropping a hitter just when the hw sales impact of the previous game is waning off.

Now I feel we will eventually see the BotW sequel on just the original Switch hardware.
 

DunDunDunpachi

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3 more years of being Nintendo's main focus and then 3+ years of it being the "b-tier handheld for kids/families in the $150 price range" would be acceptable to me. That's when the third party hidden gems and niche stuff really begin to show up.
 
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imsosleepy

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animal crossing has sold 15 mil copies, pokemon 16 mil.
the people who own a switch love the games for it and dont need triple A 3rd party games. switch is fine and can surely do a few more years
 
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diffusionx

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This thing is selling almost 20 million a year and moves tons of games, Animal Crossing sold more in 2 months than Sony exclusives sell in years, there’s no reason to move on.

Not to mention it’s a reasonably affordable system whereas Sony and MS will be rolling out $500+ consoles in an economic depression, good luck with that.
 

Azelover

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I don't believe this for a second. Games ran poorly since day 1 so it's gonna feel like crap 3 years from now. Many upgrades will be implemented under the covers.
How long will it take for people to realize, that Nintendo works under a different set of values? It's a really simple concept, and yet nobody seems to understand it..or come to terms with it.
 

jaysius

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Ooof, this is a long time to be behind the curve. Looks like my Switch will continue to gather dust as no AAA 3rd party gives 1 fuck about the machine, and if I'm not into the current 1st party release of the quarter then I'm SOL for playing my Switch. I LOVED Mario Odyssey but there are only so many times you can replay that.

I already owned the "WiiU ported to Switch" games, and I wouldn't be paying more than they had orignally cost to play them with almost no additional content.

Nintendo needs to release MORE GAMES for this thing. Not EVERYONE loves that game of the quarter.

Someone said "Nintendo Works differently" YUP, they shaft their fans, and nobody screams bloody murder becasue it's NINTENDO. Any other company acts like Nintendo, fans cry bloody murder and at least in the next quarter the company responds, with either more games or anything at all.

Nintendo has such a strong apologist fanboi network that releasing something with the power of a Nvidia Sheild as the main platform and giving it a trickle of 1st party games, and NO AAA 3rd party games is PERFECT and if you DON'T AGREE then YOU have the problem.

The console market is a horse race, Sony and MS are always trying to be neck and neck with each other, while Nintendo is in the back of the pack trying to lick itself... and they still mange to make money. Nintendo is TOO COMFORTABLE, they need disruption.
 
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Azelover

Titanic was called the Ship of Dreams, and it was. It really was.
Dec 3, 2004
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Ooof, this is a long time to be behind the curve. Looks like my Switch will continue to gather dust as no AAA 3rd party gives 1 fuck about the machine, and if I'm not into the current 1st party release of the quarter then I'm SOL for playing my Switch. I LOVED Mario Odyssy but there are only so many times you can replay that.

Nintendo needs to release MORE GAMES for this thing. Not EVERYONE loves that game of the quarter.
Yeah I agree with that...
 

Coolwhhip

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For the Switch audience the tech doesn't matter anyway. Look at Animal Crossing. The people playing that don't even know what frames per second is.

Which sucks for people like me that want to play Zelda in 4k. But what you gonna do.
 
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Fbh

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Wouldn't mind that to be honest.
I use mine almost exclusively for Nintendo exclusives and I don't play those for the graphics. And as the article says, they can still release a "pro" version that plays the same games at higher resolution/framerate
 

Lone Wolf

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I think it’s fine to keep the Switch around for a while. They do need more software, and much more of the classic virtual console stuff. Better online and a trophy/achievement system wouldn’t hurt either.
 
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Chittagong

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No problem believing this.

Switch has been totally competent next to my PS4 Pro and Xbox One X. Given that the Xbox Series X reveal looked not really that different from Xbox One X graphics I believe Switch will continue to be viable.

I just yesterday prebought Xenoblade Remake, Catherine and Deadly Premonition 2, and seriously hovered over Bravely Default 2. The Switch has so much mileage left in it. We haven’t seen any EAD games in a couple of years I believe, so a second round of NCL heavy hitters and Metroid will carry us til 2023
 
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Animagic

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I expect Nintendo to have no concept of why this thing is popular and trip into a puddle of diarrhea with some lame core concept no one wants with Switch 2 or whatever the successor is.

hopefully I’m wrong, but you know how they can be.
 
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Spukc

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But but Switch Pro!

Of course Nintendo sees it this way. Wario64 is posting tweets to let fans know when the Switch has come back in stock, three years after its initial release.
I mean.... how fucking pathetic is that? 🤣
 

Panajev2001a

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How long will it take for people to realize, that Nintendo works under a different set of values? It's a really simple concept, and yet nobody seems to understand it..or come to terms with it.
... and then, for example, thee seconds after they announced a PS4 Pro like HW in terms of power: “OMG so excited, want it now! Imagine the possibilities with Nintendo’s wizards on it! OMG OMG” ;).
 

NahaNago

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I can see them releasing a console in late 2022 or early 2023. It gives the hardware time enough to get cheaper and closer to next gen graphics. They skip this year since power next gens release now and skip next year since third party will still be releasing games to all consoles as well, and finally release in 2022 since everyone should be just about abandoning last gen.
 
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EDMIX

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I don't believe this for a second. Games ran poorly since day 1 so it's gonna feel like crap 3 years from now. Many upgrades will be implemented under the covers.

I believe it.

The games that ran poorly are also games that are not even made for the system ground up anyway. Nintendo made this for NINTENDO GAMES, don't be shocked to see them ride this out for a long time. I think its correct for them to get their money's worth.
 
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NOLA_Gaffer

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Nintendo's products are generally on the market 5 to 7 years, and with the Switch being a success, I don't see them wanting to rush to replace it anytime soon, so I figure we're probably at roughly the halfway point.
 

StormCell

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I'm curious, what is it about Switch being the flagship hardware in 2022 that you don't agree with?

If the hardware remains basically unchanged, in 2022 it won't just be under-powered but practically legacy.

Will you still be expecting new PS4 games in 2022?
 

leo-j

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If the hardware remains basically unchanged, in 2022 it won't just be under-powered but practically legacy.

Will you still be expecting new PS4 games in 2022?
The issue is Nintendo managed with the Wii but once sony and Microsoft offered motion control options and “new gen” Wii like experiences the Wii sales dropped dramatically. That and 3rd parties just didn’t want to release games on Wii because they would flop.
Switch isn’t doing Wii numbers, but it’s close. I don’t see why this platform is going to outlast or outsell the Wii when the ps5 and series x are coming with serious cloud tech that would make your tablet a portable ps4 which is already a gen ahead of the switch in tech.
 

StormCell

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The issue is Nintendo managed with the Wii but once sony and Microsoft offered motion control options and “new gen” Wii like experiences the Wii sales dropped dramatically. That and 3rd parties just didn’t want to release games on Wii because they would flop.
Switch isn’t doing Wii numbers, but it’s close. I don’t see why this platform is going to outlast or outsell the Wii when the ps5 and series x are coming with serious cloud tech that would make your tablet a portable ps4 which is already a gen ahead of the switch in tech.

Yeah, that's been the narrative I'm telling going back into the Nintendo Discussion thread. I've believed Nintendo will do this (7 years of OG Switch), but I can't believe a majority of Nintendo fans are in favor of it. I don't want another 2 years, like with the Wii, where I basically have nothing to really look forward to except around the holidays.
 

iHaunter

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I'm regretting buying it to be honest. Games run like shit. BOTW was laggy as hell on Day 1. I don't know how they have such poor hardware for $300. Even if you include the heavily over-priced Joycons.
 

UnNamed

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Switch struggle to handle current gen games (PS4 / XBOX) and there is no hope to run titles created around the next gen. This could be very problematic in term of games in the future. Having ports from other platform is the one or even the main reason Switch haven't the same fate as the WiiU.
A bold move would have been to release a Switch 2 with retro compatibility in 2021 to catch some of the next gen titles. I don't see any problem to have a successful but shorter lifespan, like the GBA.
 

Woopah

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If the hardware remains basically unchanged, in 2022 it won't just be under-powered but practically legacy.

Will you still be expecting new PS4 games in 2022?
I'd expect some small PS4 games in 2022 but nothing major no. But in 2022 PS4 will be 9 years old while Switch will only be 5 years old. I can't see the successor coming out in less than 6 years.
 

Zannegan

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Did anyone really expect them to launch a next gen system that leaves the Switch behind in the next 2 years? The thing is selling like crazy.

A pro is still possible of course, or even a "Switch 2" in the vein of the XSX, where all games are cross platform, but Nintendo isn't going to cut short the lifespan of its wildly successful platform just to chase after 3rd party devs who are currently focused on pushing the next gen envelope.

And, no, a pro console would not do anything to help them get more downports from next gen. Why? Because even if you made "pro-only" next gen ports a thing, from a third party perspective, you'd be resetting the audience from 0, so where's the incentive to invest in a port? How many people will actually be there to buy it? A pro console has never sold more than a fraction of the base console. Better to wait for a Switch 2, and the hype-adoption that an all-new gen brings.

And how are you supposed to get a mobile CPU that comes anywhere near the XSX/PS5/XSS right now anyway? In three years, they *might* be able to put out an affordable handheld that's close enough to get downports from next gen, maybe. More likely though you'll be looking at a handheld PS4/Pro, with more modern features that occasionally receives a few next gen ports but will get a slew of current gen ports and remasters.
 

ROMhack

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I say this as somebody who likes Switch but the appeal really has become the hardware not the games.

It's becoming a bit concerning that the releases are starting to be so spread out. This happened with the Wii U during its mid-end run and it wasn't a good time to own one.
 
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Danny Dudekisser

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This geriatric hardware needs to be taken out back and shot. Gimme that damn Switch Pro.
 

Yoda

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Needs OLED for better visual fidelity + less battery drain and a better GPU. It needs to take advantage of lazy publisher who wanna resell their XBONE/PS4 remasters and w/its current power, that generally requires a dedicated developer to optimize the hell out of the source + chop the visual fidelity to crap.
 
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Thurible

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I don't see much of a need for a successor if they are doing well with it and are ok not having next gen parity on their end. Personally I am ok with this as I don't want to spend time and money on another system now.
 
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