We can already imagine the various hot takes on tech gadget blogs all over the world following the announcement of the Nintendo Switch Lite. Headlines like "Nintendo Switch Lite Sucks As It Has No TV Out" and "Is The Nintendo Switch Lite Even A Switch?" will surely be the order of the day.
Sure, there are some compromises here to get the Nintendo Switch Lite to that magical $199 price point. It doesn't include a dock and it isn't even possible to connect it to your TV with a cable. It's a handheld experience only – you know, like your 3DS, which is now likely gathering dust on your gaming shelf.
It will also not offer detachable Joy-Con or a kickstand, so you are really going to be using it for personal gameplay most of the time. It will not even support the full library of Nintendo Switch games; it doesn't have HD Rumble or the IR Motion Camera, either. The screen has been shrunk from 6.2" to 5.5", but we still see some bezels present.
But you know what? It doesn't really matter. Because...
The Nintendo Switch Lite Was Not Made For You
With all those little negatives out of the way, if it still bothers you, it's likely that the Nintendo Switch Lite was simply not made with you in mind. We'd say it's a no-brainer that Nintendo is positioning the Switch Lite squarely at families who might want to have more than one Switch in the house. As a parent of two young kids, now aged 11 and 7, I can attest that the 3DS has been a wonderful device to help pass the time during long car journeys. When my son was younger he even had the 2DS which was pretty much indestructible – right up to the day he dropped it down the stairs. Oops.
Having a personal device where each child has a screen of their own and can choose to play together or do their own thing has afforded great freedom in our household and avoided many potential arguments. Now my kids are a bit older, they can often sit down together on the sofa and play Switch games together, or at times with the Joy-Con in handheld mode, but arguments about what they want to play still abound. Having their own device would solve this issue.
Farewell Nintendo 3DS
With its late September release date, the Nintendo Switch Lite is squarely aimed at families who wish to pick up the perfect seasonable present for the little gamer in their lives. Available in a range of eye-catching colours and with a special Pokémon Sword and Shield edition, we have no doubt that the Lite will be irresistible to younger gamers who have already experienced the joys of the Switch at friend's houses on the big screen.
With the base unit costing $100 less than a full-fat Switch, we'd imagine many parents trading in the TV output for a more personal gaming device for their loved one. After all, they can then watch their soap operas on the TV in peace without their kid bothering them about the big-screen experience.
Not only is the Lite cheaper, but the battery life is rated at 3-7 hours, which is a modest improvement on the 2.5 to 6.5 hours touted for the original Switch. The form factor the Lite is of course much more pocketable and robust, which is yet another great benefit for younger players.
What are your thoughts on the Nintendo Switch Lite? Can you imagine a big audience for it, even if it isn't quite for you? Be sure to share your opinions with a comment below.