The Nintendo Switch is a very popular console. Nintendo has managed to catch lightning in a bottle a second time with its hybrid of a TV-based console and a portable gaming device. The impressive library of games helped push millions of units of the console in the last three years since launch. And with a relatively stable launch and a relatively low failure rate, the Switch has overtaken the Xbox One in terms of sales, and is on track to be a rather successful console throughout its lifecycle.
As of now, Nintendo has also rolled out two new hardware variations. The improved battery life of the V2 model was first. Gamers who loved their portable Switch were also overjoyed to get a fully portable variant with the Switch Lite. And with constant software updates coming out, like the new 10.x.x firmware, users are getting features they really need and want. For example, we now have the option to transfer game data to the microSD cards in our Switch consoles.
The firmware code was quickly dug through by dataminers, revealing something interesting. It looks like Nintendo is working on two new hardware variants of the console, including one that has now portability. This suspected SKU would be more in line with a traditional games console.
There have been some missteps along the way though. The ongoing JoyCon drift issues still linger and leave a bad taste in the mouths of many fans.
Further examination revealed a few different quirks within the naming scheme buried in the code. According to the 10.0.0 update, 5 hardware models supported by the OS; these are Icosa, Copper, Hoag, Iowa, and Calcio. Icosa, Hoag, and Iowa have been released; they’re the launch model, the lite, and the updated model with improved battery life, respectively.
These hardware configs suggest a few new setups could be coming in the following months that change the way we play the Nintendo Switch. Nintendo has already rolled out the Lite, a purely mobile version of the console without the HDMI support and docking functionality, so it kind of makes sense that they would run in the opposite direction and create an integrated model that’s meant purely as a TV-based games console.
No other details about pricing, memory configuration, CPUs or other technical specs have been revealed at this time. And since the initial release of the 10.x.x firmware, a patch has removed references to some hardware SKUs.