Nvidia Tegra X1 Lives: Nintendo Reportedly Beefing Up Switch Production

Two Nintendo Switches
(Image credit: Future)

The Nintendo Switch may be nearly six years old, but it has proven to have serious staying power, redefining what a console generation looks like with its longevity. In fact, Nintendo plans to increase the number of the consoles it's making, according to a report from Bloomberg, having shipped around 21 million Switch systems in its fiscal year that ends in March.

Nintendo reportedly informed suppliers that it expects to build more units in its next fiscal year, beginning in April. It previously lowered its expectations to 19 million units but now sees a path where the system stays more popular.

The Switch was particularly hard to find early in the pandemic, as people stayed inside and looked for entertainment while Nintendo battled the same chip shortages as other electronics manufacturers.

But Nintendo's console is showing its age in one respect: the Nvidia Tegra X1 system-on-a-chip, which released two years prior to the Switch even launching. While many of Nintendo's first-party games are still running OK on the hardware (though there were some performance concerns about Pokémon Scarlet and Violet), games that have been ported from other systems aren't up to snuff graphically.

There have been rumors swirling of a next-gen Switch for years now. In 2021, at the peak of the speculation, Nintendo released a Switch with an OLED screen, including a larger panel but the same SOC. However, some potential buyers may continue to hold fast, waiting to see if a more powerful next-gen system comes.

The Switch lineup starts at $199.99 for the Switch Lite, goes to $249.99 for the regular Switch and $349 for the Switch OLED. That low price might be attractive as fears of a potential economic recession swirl.

In 2023, Nintendo's flagship title will be The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom, which is set to launch on May 12. It's the sequel to the smash hit The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (which released at the Switch's launch), so that may help push unit sales. In addition, it wouldn't be surprising to see the company make a Zelda-themed Switch for the occasion, enticing hardcore fans and collectors.

Some rumors have suggested a new console could accompany that game, or that it could be cross-platform with the current Switch, but there's nothing concrete there at the moment.

Other games that could help push Switch sales this year include Fire Emblem Engage (which comes out today), Bayonetta Origins: Cereza and the Lost Demon and a number of games coming to other systems as well, like Hogwarts Legacy, Disgaea 7, Tales of Symphonia Remastered and Octopath Traveller II.

But it seems like the Switch and its Tegra X1 will chug on for a while longer. Nintendo appears to have confidence in it.

Andrew E. Freedman

Andrew E. Freedman is a senior editor at Tom's Hardware focusing on laptops, desktops and gaming. He also keeps up with the latest news. A lover of all things gaming and tech, his previous work has shown up in Tom's Guide, Laptop Mag, Kotaku, PCMag and Complex, among others. Follow him on Twitter: @FreedmanAE

  • JamesJones44
    Sadly I doubt we will get a new generation console with ZToK. I'm fairly sure you would have heard some rumblings of it by now in the supply chain. If anyone needs a new console it's Nintendo, it was already behind hardware wise what the PS4/XBox could do.
    Reply
  • Metal Messiah.
    In 2023, Nintendo's flagship title will be The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom, which is set to launch on May 12. Some rumors have suggested a new console could accompany that game, or that it could be cross-platform with the current Switch, but there's nothing concrete there at the moment

    I doubt a new Nintendo console will be out by the time this game releases. There have been rumors of a new console coming out in 2024, second half of the year. A new report from Japan indicates that a successor to the Nintendo Switch could be launching in 2024, with the company in negotiations with suppliers.

    A Nintendo Switch 2 or Nintendo Switch Pro with improved performance has long been rumored, with various patents hinting at some of the features it could include such as updated Joy-Cons, but this is the first time that a release window has been suggested.

    As spotted by Reddit user anirakdream, a Nikkei article covering the Nintendo Switch's sales figures has stated that the console's successor is not expected until the second half of 2024. The report claims that Nintendo is in negotiations with suppliers on a production system for the new console.
    Reply
  • YouFilthyHippo
    You wont see a new Nintendo console this year. I highly doubt you would see it in 2024. You will probably hear news about it in late 2024, with nothing confirmed until 2025, for a release in late 2025. That said, Nintendo console specs have always been garbage. The nintendo switch 2/pro in 2025 will probably be a quad core cpu with 8GB RAM and a GTX 1060-equivalent GPU, at best. I don't hold out much hope for nintendo consoles anymore.
    Reply
  • Geef
    Nintendo knows it has a huge amount of fans and they will wait however long it takes. Nintendo can probably wait another generation or two for chips to be developed that are smaller and more powerful. Nintendo could wait long enough to have 4k/60Hz on a handheld and it's customers would still be there just waiting to buy it.
    Reply
  • Mandark
    Geef said:
    Nintendo knows it has a huge amount of fans and they will wait however long it takes. Nintendo can probably wait another generation or two for chips to be developed that are smaller and more powerful. Nintendo could wait long enough to have 4k/60Hz on a handheld and it's customers would still be there just waiting to buy it.
    Yeah, and I don’t understand this at all. With every release you only get one new major game in their IP. 😂😂😂

    yet people line up to buy them over and over to play the same games over and over and over. I wonder when people will get sick of it
    Reply
  • bigdragon
    I don't care for photorealistic graphics in every game, so I have no complaints about the Switch right now. The Nvidia chip is getting the job done for most games. I'm hoping Nintendo isn't eager to replace it. I don't want to see a new console until the second half of 2024 or later. A Switch Pro would be fine as long as games are required to still run with playable framerates on the original Switch.

    Nintendo really needs to increase their content output. More studios. Small teams. Big teams. Just more. Every project doesn't have to be a Zelda BotW/TofK event. I always considered Star Fox and Mario Kart to be smaller games, for example. They don't have the same scope as a Zelda or Mario Odyssey.
    Reply
  • voodoobunny
    I think the critics here of the Switch are missing the point that Nintendo have made with their 21 million sales: the Switch may have "outdated" hardware, but it does things that the other consoles just don't. The performance aspect is second to the usability.

    Have you ever picked your XBox up and sat on the sofa with it, or taken it into another room to play while other people in your house watch TV? No you have not. Have you ever played 8-player local-co-op anything on them? No you have not. Have you ever (seriously) considered getting a second or third PS5 so that everyone can play their favorite console games in the living room at the same time? No you have not. Ever played PS5 or XBox in a car, or plane, or train? No you have not. Nintendo understood that the performance of the hardware came second to giving players new ways to use it, and they dealt with the consequent hardware restrictions by applying creativity instead of waiting for "more powerful hardware" to become available. Oh, and made a staggering amount of money doing it.

    I have an XBox One and a Switch in my house. The XBox goes mostly unused, while the Switch is used enough that I have seriously considered getting a second one. On top of that, Zelda BOTW is so good that I consider the entire cost of the switch worth it just for that one game (and with the amount of playtime it has gotten across four players in my house, that's not hard to argue). That's not because the Switch has better hardware or graphics, it's because it is much easier to use, and (this is key) to pick up and game on for a while.
    Reply
  • Mandark
    Ok. Enjoy your One new game per console 😂😂😂
    Reply
  • Ogotai
    Mandark said:
    Ok. Enjoy your One new game per console
    heh, thats what would happen if i bought a xbox or PSm between them i think there are maybe 5 games i would play, the switch, i currently have 8 games. for some, its more about the games they would play, vs what the hardware is capable of. been in an arguement with a friend or 2 over the years about that, they couldnt understand why i would choose a nintendo system over and xbox or PS, then i said, tell you what these are the games i would like to play on ( this system ) you buy me the system, and i will buy the game(s) i want to play, they said no, i replied with, then its not worth it for me to buy that system when there are only 1-3 games i want to play
    Reply