Nintendo Switch
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How is the Nintendo Switch Lite different from the original Switch?



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Todd L Ross

The primary difference between the Nintendo Switch Lite and the original Switch is that the Switch Lite is designed strictly for portable play.

It cannot be docked or hooked up to an external screen, and its controls are a permanent part of the device (as opposed to the original Switch’s detachable Joy-Con controls). The new console also has a direction pad (or D-pad) incorporated into the left side of its face. As such, it’s more similar to traditional portable systems like the Nintendo DS in both appearance and functionality.

However, the Switch Lite will be able to play most of the same games as the original Switch, and it will be capable of linking with original Switch consoles to play multiplayer games, either through local wireless or online play.

At launch, the Switch Lite will not be able to play any games that do not support the original Switch’s handheld mode—if you buy a Switch Lite, be sure to check games carefully before purchasing them to make sure the console supports them. The Switch Lite will be capable of syncing with separately purchased Joy-Cons, but without them, it won’t be able to play games that rely on motion controls or multiple Joy-Cons. It may not work with some accessories designed for the original console.

The Switch Lite will be available in three colors: yellow, gray, and turquoise. It has a suggested retail price of $199.99, which is $100 less than the original Switch. While the original Switch has a 6.2-inch screen, the Switch Lite has a 5.5-inch screen, and the Switch Lite will have about 20-30 percent better battery life than the original.