“I just think that a portable-only Switch makes the most sense,” says industry analyst Michael Pachter.
As a hybrid machine that can be used as both a portable handheld machine and a home console, the Nintendo Switch has unique appeal to a wide market, and also to Nintendo, who have been able to unify their handheld and console software pipelines to deliver more content for a single machine.
Of course, the Switch offers a cheaper alternative with the Switch Lite, which removes the console’s docking capabilities, turning it into a handheld-only portable system. And according to Wedbush Securities analyst Michael Pachter, that device is the one that Nintendo should ideally be focusing all their efforts on.
Speaking with GamingBolt in a recent interview, Pachter said that the Switch’s hybrid concept isn’t one that gets a lot of use, and that the smart thing for Nintendo to do would be to drop the console side of things and turn the Switch into a purely handheld device.
“I don’t really understand the whole hybrid concept,” Pachter told GamingBolt. “I think that was something Iwata did to differentiate the Switch, and he wanted to have a console that could go back and forth from console to portable. But I don’t think most people play it in both modes, I would say that maybe 20% of Switch owners play both modes; and I think most Switch owners play it handheld only. So I honestly don’t understand the whole point of the hybrid. Who cares? Play it as a handheld.”
“And Nintendo isn’t that smart,” he continued, “so you never know what they will do next, but I think the smart thing would be to get rid of the Switch console and only have the Switch Lite, get rid of the docking station, get rid of playing on the TV; maybe offer a Fire Stick style dongle for those who do want to play it on the TV. But I just think that a portable-only Switch makes the most sense, it’s the cheapest to make, and they could make the screen nicer and the build quality better.”
Speaking about next-gen and what Nintendo could have in store, Pachter said, “I am not sure what we will see from them next generation, if there will be upgrade to processing power. They should at least put some flash memory in it so you can download some games and not have to screw around with cartridges.”
Recent reports have suggested that Nintendo is planning on releasing a 4K-ready Switch variant in 2021, and that it will have “a slew” of major new releases to go along with it throughout the year.
Our full interview with Pachter will be going live soon, so stay tuned for that.