The wait is nearly over: Nintendo Switch Lite is arriving soon. Preorders are open now.

One month ago, Nintendo announced a new Switch hardware revision is coming this fall: the Nintendo Switch Lite.

This lighter, more compact model is designed for those who prefer handheld gaming or gaming on the go. The device, which releases September 20th, comes in three colours: yellow, grey and turquoise. Preorders for the Nintendo Switch Lite are now open through our product partners at Walmart.ca:

Comparing the models

Side by side

The Switch Lite is an affordable alternative that sacrifices some features found on the launch Switch model, while also improving other aspects. Here’s a quick comparison chart:

Nintendo Switch Nintendo Switch Lite
Screen: Multi-touch capacitive touch screen / 6.2-inch LCD / 1280×720 resolution Capacitive touch screen / 5.5-inch LCD / 1280×720 resolution
Storage: 32 GB of internal storage 32 GB of internal storage
Weight: 0.66 lbs (0.88 lbs with Joy-Con controllers attached) 0.61 lbs
Size: 4 inches high, 9.4 inches long, and 0.55 inches deep 3.6 inches high, 8.2 inches long, and 0.55 inches deep
CPU/GPU: NVIDIA Custom Tegra processor NVIDIA Custom Tegra processor
Battery Life: 2.5 to 6.5 hours 3.0 to 7.0 hours
Sensor: Accelerometer, gyroscope, and brightness sensor Accelerometer, gyroscope
Modes: TV, Tabletop, Handheld Handheld
D-Pad: No Yes
Kickstand: Yes No
Docking Station: Yes No
IR Camera: Yes No
HD Rumble: Yes No
Joy-Con Controllers: Yes No

Source: Nintendo of Canada

Nintendo Switch Lite – Features

Switch Lite

Looking at the above chart, four key features stand out.

  • Battery Life: The Switch Lite offers an extra 0.5 hour battery, which isn’t a whole lot but it’s an improvement. Many times I’ve had my Switch battery fully drain while gaming on the go, so an extra half hour of battery sure sounds nice. It’s worth noting, too, that Nintendo plans on releasing an updated base Switch console (Model number: HAC-001(-01)) that will provide 4.5 – 9 hours of battery life. This new model is expected to be available starting in mid-August 2019.
  • D-pad: The Switch Lite features a traditional D-pad, as opposed to the up, down, left, right buttons found on the Left Joy-Con Controller. Personally, I prefer D-pads over buttons, as I find pads are more responsive for better control.
  • Unified Form Factor: Instead of having detachable Joy-Con Controllers, the Switch Lite features a unified form factor. If you primarily game in handheld mode, this means you won’t have to worry about controllers popping off—nor do you have to worry about charging Joy-Cons.
  • Smaller, Lighter: The difference in size and weight between the Switch and Switch Lite isn’t huge, but when you game on the go every little bit helps. The Switch Lite shaves off 0.4 inches from the height and 1.2 inches from the length; it’s also 0.27 lbs lighter. This will make it easier to fit into bags or carrying cases, and it’s less weighty to lug around. Both are pluses in my eyes.

If you’re thinking about preordering a Nintendo Switch Lite it’s important to understand what it doesn’t come with. Unlike the launch Switch model, the Switch Lite is handheld-only, meaning there’s no kickstand for Tabletop Mode and there’s no Docking Station for TV Mode. Switch Lite also doesn’t come with detachable Joy-Con Controllers.

Be aware that the vast majority of Nintendo Switch titles are compatible with Switch Lite, but there are a handful that require Joy-Con Controllers, like 1-2-Switch or Super Mario Party. Thankfully, you can purchase a pair of Joy-Cons separately and sync them to your Switch Lite. Good that the option exists.

Also be aware that the Switch Lite removes the IR Sensor and HD Rumble features. Not a lot of games use the IR Sensor—personally, I’ve only ever used it while playing 1-2-Switch and that’s it. Quite a few games use the HD Rumble though, so current Switch owners looking to pick up a Switch Lite will likely notice the difference.

Nintendo Switch Lite – Available for preorder now

Walmart.ca

A lot of gamers are excited about Nintendo Switch Lite, and why not? It’s a great price for a console with tons of incredible games. If you’re looking to upgrade from your current Switch console or jumping into the Switch experience for the first time, make sure you nab your preorder now. Here again are the links from our product partners at Walmart.ca:

With just over a month to go until Switch Lite releases, I can already feel the buzz. I’ll be getting hands-on with Switch Lite soon so stay tuned for my impressions, and happy gaming!