Nintendo Switch 2 again tipped for 2024 launch — but with a potential downgrade

The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom running on a special edition Nintendo Switch OLED
(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

The latest Nintendo Switch 2 report contains a lot of details we’ve heard already: the console will launch in 2024, it will be capable of portable play and it will support physical games via a cartridge slot. However, this new set of rumors also suggests that the Switch 2 will actually be downgraded from its predecessor in a key area. 

VGC, a popular gaming site with a respectable record of accurate reporting, has spoken to multiple people that claim to have “knowledge of Nintendo’s next-gen console plans." These sources have suggested that the follow-up to the wildly popular Nintendo Switch could launch with an LCD screen. Opting for LCD over OLED will “bring down costs” but would be a disappointing downgrade in our book. 

We list an OLED display as standard as one of the key upgrades we need to see on the Nintendo Switch 2, and with Nintendo having launched a Nintendo Switch OLED model in 2021, returning to LCD would be essentially a backward step. After experiencing some of the best Switch games on a gorgeous 7-inch OLED display, we definitely don’t want to go back to a less vibrant LCD screen.  

As noted, VGC also claims that Switch 2 will include a portable play mode, support physical game cartridges and will pack increased internal memory (a real no-brainer as the base Switch only offers a paltry 32GB). The site’s sources weren’t able to confirm (or deny) if Nintendo’s next console will be backwards compatible with the current Switch's library, but it’s a feature I believe to be absolutely essential

The gaming outlet also claims that the Switch 2 is targeting a launch in the second half of next year, which deviates slightly from recent reports that indicated it’s aiming for a release date in early 2024. VGC claims Nintendo favors a release in the back half of the year to ensure it has ample supply and is able to avoid the stock shortages that plagued the PS5 and Xbox Series X at launch.

Tears of the Kingdom Switch OLED

(Image credit: Future)

While the source is respectable, we still advise taking all the above as rumor rather than fact, at least for now. There are currently virtually no concrete details about the Nintendo Switch 2. In fact, we don’t even know for sure if it’ll even bear the Switch name.  

Nintendo has confirmed during various earning calls it is working on new hardware, but otherwise, the gaming company hasn’t released any details on its next system. Of course that hasn’t stopped the rumor mill from churning out various reports and leaks in recent months. 

Given the juggernaut success of the Nintendo Switch, a follow-up seems a near certainty, but Nintendo has a track record of taking surprising turns so there’s always a possibility it’ll leave the Switch brand behind in favor of something completely fresh. 

As the rumors regarding the Switch 2 continue to swirl, we could hear something official before the end of 2023, but it’s also possible that Nintendo wants to squeeze one last holiday season out of the current Switch lineup and waits until 2024 before talking on the record about what’s next.  

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Rory Mellon
Entertainment Editor (UK)

Rory is an Entertainment Editor at Tom’s Guide based in the UK. He covers a wide range of topics but with a particular focus on gaming and streaming. When he’s not reviewing the latest games, searching for hidden gems on Netflix, or writing hot takes on new gaming hardware, TV shows and movies, he can be found attending music festivals and getting far too emotionally invested in his favorite football team.