We’ve just got wind of a small but significant hint that a potential Nintendo Switch 2 is in the works.
As flagged by Ars Technica (opens in new tab), in the Appendices (opens in new tab) of a report by the Competition and Markets Authority assessing Microsoft's controversial proposed purchase of Activision Blizzard, there is a line that says: “Nintendo’s cloud gaming service is only available on the Nintendo Switch device and [redacted].” Ars Technica speculated that this “and” followed by the redaction is an indication Nintendo is working on new console hardware, and I’d tend to agree with that assessment.
Given Nintendo is a gaming giant, it’s almost certainly looking at developing a new console. But the fact that it’s brought up here in relation to cloud gaming and the Switch, is a solid indication that next-gen hardware from Nintendo could be an evolution of the Switch.
This would make a lot of sense as the Switch has been hugely popular for Nintendo, yet it's nearly six years old and therefore somewhat aged for a games console. And rumors of a powered-up Switch in the guise of the so-called Nintendo Switch Pro have been circulating over the past two years, suggesting an upgrade on the hybrid handheld console could be coming.
As it happens, we saw the debut of the Nintendo Switch OLED in 2021, which poured some water over the smoldering Switch Pro rumors. But those have since reigned in the form of Switch 2, with this CMA tidbit being another hint at a Switch successor.
Nintendo is as tight-lipped as the likes of Apple when it comes to confirming rumors or acknowledging work on next-generation consoles. And searching through the appendices, I wasn't able to find any other mention of a next-generation Nintendo console. But with the likes of The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom coming, there’s scope for a new Switch to be launched around the same time to offer better performance for a flagship game.
Now I’d not put a bet on a surprise Switch 2 launch happening at the same time as Tears of the Kingdom makes its debut. But I’d not be surprised to hear more Switch 2 rumors as 2023 pushes onwards.
I’m just hoping that whatever Nintendo does it emphasizes 4K output so the Switch works best with our selection of the best TVs, as well as find ways to boost battery life.