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Nintendo Switch OLED: How much will the new model cost and will it be 4K?

Everything you need to know about the upcoming portable console

Alistair Charlton
Tuesday 28 September 2021 10:29
<p>It’s set to be the flagship of the Nintendo Switch range, with more storage, a redesigned kickstand and a new, improved display</p>

It’s set to be the flagship of the Nintendo Switch range, with more storage, a redesigned kickstand and a new, improved display

The newest member of the Nintendo Switch family, called the Switch OLED, is about to go on sale.

Announced in early-July, the console is currently available for pre-order and will arrive in stores in October.

It’s set to be the flagship of the Nintendo Switch range, with a higher price tag than any other model, along with more storage, a redesigned kickstand and a new, improved display.

It was previously thought that the Nintendo Switch OLED would be called the Switch pro or even the Switch 2, but instead Nintendo went with a name highlighting the console’s new OLED display.

Below, we’ve tried to answer all of your important questions about the console before you invest.

Read more:

Nintendo Switch OLED: Pre-order now for £309.99, Argos.co.uk

Latest Nintendo Switch OLED news (updated 28 September 2021)

The Nintendo Switch OLED is just days away from going on sale and arriving in the hands of customers who placed a pre-order.

However, the hybrid console isn’t available to order from every retailer. Some, like Argos and Simply Games, have pre-order stock available, while the BT Store allows you to sign up to register your interest. But sadly many others, like Currys PC World, Amazon, Game, AO, Argos, Very and even the Nintendo Store itself, are not currently accepting pre-orders.

It is hoped that these retailers, and others, will have more stock available ahead of the Switch OLED being released in October.

When will the Nintendo Switch OLED be released?

Nintendo originally announced the Switch OLED back on 6 July and retailers opened their pre-ordering systems earlier in September. The console will finally be released on 8 October, which is when pre-orders should arrive. It is also when we hope to see retailers offer fresh stock both in-store and online.

Read more: Where to pre-order the Nintendo Switch OLED in the UK

But with the global semiconductor shortage rumbling on, slowing both PS5 and Xbox series X restocks to a crawl, we wouldn’t be surprised if Switch OLED stock is restricted at launch.

We would recommend that readers try to get a pre-order in now if they want any hope of receiving a shiny new console on its 8 October release date.

How much will the Nintendo Switch OLED cost?

The latest instalment of the Switch is the most expensive yet, with a recommended retail price of £309.99. For this you get the console itself, as well as a pair of joy-con controllers and a dock for connecting the console to a television.

We also expect to see a number of bundles offered by several retailers when the Switch OLED arrives, adding in games, controllers and other accessories.

Read more: 10 best Nintendo Switch accessories to take your gaming to the next level

As for availability, we already mentioned that we suspect picking up a console on day one is going to be difficult – that is, unless Nintendo plans to flood the market with fresh stock.

For now though, retailers like Smyths Toys and Currys simply list the Switch OLED as out of stock. But keep an eye out as this could well change between now and 8 October.

What are the new Nintendo Switch OLED’s specs?

There have been some key upgrades for the Switch OLED, the first and most obvious one being its new OLED display (more on that further down) from which it get’s its namesake. But there’s also a wider, adjustable stand, double the storage of the regular Switch, up from 32GB to 64GB, and improved audio. Although, don’t be expecting any major new audio technology, such as Dolby Atmos.

Also new on the Nintendo Switch OLED is the addition of wired local area network (LAN) support. This means you can plug the console into your router for a more stable connection if your wifi network is struggling to keep your online gaming smooth.

As for the rest of the specifications, it is much like other models of Nintendo Switch. The new model is powered by a Nvidia custom tegra processor and the display, despite being larger and with OLED technology, has the same 720p HD resolution of 1280 x 720 as the regular Switch. There’s a USB-C port for charging and the battery is said by Nintendo to last between 4.5 and nine hours.

Read more: 25 best Nintendo Switch games for every type of player

Basically, instead of being a major new console for the Nintendo Switch lineage – like the PS5 is for Sony, for example – the Switch OLED is the new flagship. It will be sold alongside the regular Nintendo Switch (£259, Amazon.co.uk) and the Nintendo Switch lite (£188.49, Amazon.co.uk).

Does the new OLED display make a difference?

As we’ve already mentioned, the biggest new feature of the latest Nintendo Switch is its OLED display. This technology has previously appeared in the displays of some televisions and smartphones, but this is the first time it has appeared on a Nintendo game console.

The biggest difference between an OLED display and a more conventional LCD screen, is how the former doesn’t use an LED backlight to illuminate its pixels. Instead, the pixels emit their own light, with each pixel controlling its own brightness. This creates a greater contrast ratio, more vivid colours, and blacks that are deeper because when a pixel is switched off it is truly black.

As well as having a new type of display panel, the screen of the Switch OLED is slightly larger than before, at 7in compared to 6.62in on the regular Switch.

Is Nintendo Switch LCD or OLED?

The regular Nintendo Switch (£259, Amazon.co.uk) and cheaper Switch lite (£189, Amazon.co.uk) both have LCD screens, which are illuminated from behind using an LED panel.

However, the new Switch OLED is different because it is the first and only model of Switch to feature an OLED display. This screen technology produces more vivid colours, a greater contrast ratio and deeper blacks.

How big is the Nintendo Switch OLED?

The 7in screen of the Nintendo Switch OLED is the biggest of any Switch model to date. It is slightly larger than the 6.62in panel of the regular Switch, which will remain on sale after the Switch OLED arrives in October, and the 5.5in screen of the Switch lite.

Does the Nintendo Switch OLED have 4K?

Sadly not. It had been rumoured that the latest Switch would have a 4K output option, but this is not the case. Instead, the console’s own display has a 720p HD resolution and it can output to a television, via the included dock, at the higher 1080p full HD resolution.

We would love to have seen a 4K output option, especially given how many consumers already own 4K televisions, but it looks like Nintendo has decided to hold this feature back for a future generation of Switch.

Why is the Nintendo Switch OLED better?

As we mentioned earlier, OLED displays offer a better contrast ratio, deeper blacks and more vivid colours than LCD displays. The Switch OLED also benefits from having a slightly larger screen, at 7in compared to the 6.62in panel of the regular Switch, along with a larger, adjustable kickstand, improved audio and double the internal storage, up from 32GB to 64GB.

What is Nintendo Switch 2?

It was rumoured for some time that the Switch OLED would actually be called the Nintendo Switch 2. But those mutterings failed to materialise, and instead the newest and the greatest member of the Switch family took its namesake from its improved screen.

Very little is known about what a second-generation Nintendo Switch might be like. But if you were to ask us what we want, we’d say a 4K resolution, both outputted to the TV but also on the Switch’s own OLED display.

We would also like to see a more powerful processor, even more storage than the 64GB of the Switch OLED, a more elegant solution to the TV dock (how about a simple cable?), improved online gaming support and better battery life.

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