Nintendo today announced the Switch Lite, a $199.99 variant of the Switch that's only be playable in handheld mode. It will debut on September 20 in four colors: yellow, gray, turquoise and a limited edition "Zacian and Zamazenta Edition" for Pokémon Sword and Shield.
This means that the Joy-Con controllers are built into the system and aren't removable. It's also not compatible with the Switch dock. In addition, the Switch Lite's Joy-Cons won't have the HD Rumble or IR motion camera.
There are a few other spec differences. The regular Switch is 9.4 x 4 x 0.6 inches, and the Switch Lite is 8.2 x 3.6 x 0.6 inches, making it far more pocketable. It's also lighter, at 0.6 pounds compared to 0.9 pounds for the regular Switch. The touch screen is just 5.5 inches, compared to the original's 6.2-inch display. The original Switch has a 720p resolution and the Switch Lite will, too.
Oh, and the Switch Lite's left controller has a D-Pad, which the original switch lacks because removable Joy-Cons can be used as individual controllers.
|-||Nintendo Switch||Nintendo Switch Lite|
|Dimensions||9.4 x 4 x 0.6 inches||8.2 x 3.6 x 0.6 inches|
|Weight||0.9 pounds||0.6 pounds|
|Battery Life||2.5 - 6.5 hours||3 - 7 hours|
|IR Motion Camera||Yes||No|
|Touch Screen||6.2-inches, 720p||5.5-inches, 720p|
|Gaming Modes||TV, Tabletop, Handheld||Handheld|
Nintendo suggests it will last three to seven hours on a charge, which is slightly higher than the 2.5 - 6.5 hours it predicts for the original Switch, though both ranges depend on which games you're playing.
It appears that the Switch Lite is using the same custom Nvidia Tegra processor as the original, but we've reached out to Nintendo to confirm.
The Switch Lite will be compatible with any games that support handheld mode. For the few games that require being played with separate Joy-Con controllers, you can buy those separately, though you'll also need a way to recharge them, which means purchasing a Joy-Con charging grip or third-party docking station
I'm personally looking forward to this, as I play my Switch now almost exclusively in handheld mode. For those who don't care about playing on a TV, this is an easy $100 savings.
Update: July 10, 12:15 p.m. ET - Nintendo confirmed the Switch Lite's 720p display.