Nintendo Switch Lite: Price, Release Date, Specs, Colors and More

Nintendo Switch Lite
(Image credit: Nintendo)

The Nintendo Switch family officially has a new member. The $199 Nintendo Switch Lite is a smaller, handheld-only version of Nintendo's beloved home console, targeting younger gamers as well as those who play primarily on the go.

Here's everything you need to know about the Nintendo Switch Lite, from its price and release date to its compatibility with existing Switch games.

Nintendo Switch Lite price, release date and pre-orders

The Nintendo Switch Lite will release on Sept. 20, 2019 for $199. A special Pokémon Sword and Shield version of the console will arrive on Nov. 8, and will also cost $199.

The gray, yellow and turquoise versions of the Switch Lite are currently available for pre-order on Amazon, Best Buy and Target. The Pokemon Zacian and Zamazenta Edition is available for pre-order on Target.

Nintendo Switch Lite colors

Nintendo Switch Lite colors

(Image credit: Nintendo)

Nintendo appears to be going more vibrant for the Switch Lite compared to the standard Switch. At launch, the system will be available in three colors: yellow, gray and turquoise. 

Nintendo Switch Lite Pokemon edition

(Image credit: Nintendo)

The Pokémon Sword and Shield edition coming on Nov. 8 will have a light gray body with blue buttons on its left side and fuschia buttons on the right to correspond with the colors of both versions of the game. The system will also feature illustrations of Legendary Pokémon Zacian and Zamazenta on the rear.

Nintendo Switch Lite specs

As its name suggests, the Switch Lite is smaller and lighter than the standard Switch, measuring in at 8.2 x 3.6 x 0.55 inches and 9.76 ounces. It has a 5.5-inch 720p touch screen (down from the Switch's 6.2-inch display), and is actually rated for more battery life than the standard Switch, with an estimated runtime of 3 to 7 hours compared to the Switch's 2.5 to 6.5 hours. 

Nintendo hasn't specifically called out the Switch Lite internals, but it seems safe to assume that they mirror those of the standard Switch. Here's a quick glance at how the two models stack up: 

Swipe to scroll horizontally
Row 0 - Cell 0 Nintendo Switch Lite Nintendo Switch
Starting Price$199$299
Processor/GPUNVIDIA Custom Tegra processorNVIDIA Custom Tegra processor
Screen5.5" (1280 x 720) LCD Screen6.2-inch (1280 x 720) LCD Screen
Battery Life (ratings)"3 – 7 hours""2.5 - 6.5 hours"
Weight9.8 ounces14.1 ounces
Dimensions8.2 x 3.6 x 0.6 inches9.4 x 4 x 0.6 inches
GamesSwitch games that support Handheld ModeAll Switch Games
ColorsYellow, gray, turquoise, plus Pokemon Sword and Shield editionsGray or Red and Blue Joy-Cons; multiple options available

Nintendo Switch Lite play modes

Nintendo Switch Lite

(Image credit: Nintendo)

Unlike the standard Switch, the Switch Lite can only be played in handheld mode. The system's onboard controls aren't removable like the Switch's Joy-Cons are, and it can't be docked to a TV and doesn't have a kickstand for tabletop play. The system also lacks HD rumble. 

Nintendo Switch Lite games: which ones are compatible?

The Nintendo Switch Lite will work with all Nintendo Switch games that support handheld mode, which is virtually all of them. Whether you're looking to play Nintendo games like Super Mario Maker 2 or Breath of the Wild or indie titles like Celeste and Ape Out, you shouldn't have trouble running them on the Lite. If you want to be safe, you can look for the handheld mode icon on a game's package or in the Nintendo eShop.

According to Nintendo, you'll be able to connect wireless controllers to the Switch Lite "for games that do not support handheld mode." However, considering the Switch Lite doesn't have a kickstand, this doesn't seem like the most ideal way to play.

For more on the Switch Lite, check out our comparison on how the Switch Lite compares to the Nintendo Switch.

Michael Andronico

Mike Andronico is Senior Writer at CNNUnderscored. He was formerly Managing Editor at Tom's Guide, where he wrote extensively on gaming, as well as running the show on the news front. When not at work, you can usually catch him playing Street Fighter, devouring Twitch streams and trying to convince people that Hawkeye is the best Avenger.