There is no denying that Nintendo Switch has made quite a splash in the world of gaming. And for good reasons, this handheld console can be connected to your TV via its custom docking station and allows you to use it as a normal console from the comfort of your sofa. Added to this, the Nintendo Switch offers a large selection of games that are exclusive to the Nintendo brand. If you want to play games from the Mario, Pokémon or Zelda franchise, then you will need the Switch as Nintendo keep a tight fist on their intellectual property.
In handheld mode, the Switch offers a multi-touch 720p (1280 x 720px) 6.2-inch display, which is a great size for those who are looking to game on the go. Of course if the 6.2-inch display is just too small for you, then you can pop the Switch into is TV docking station and use it with any TV that has an HDMI port. Though, don’t expect 4K here as the Switch is limited to 1080p Full-HD (1920 x 1080px) when connected to your TV. You are also limited to 60 frames per second, though for those who have their hearts set on the Switch this is something that can easily be overlooked. Something that some gamers might not overlook is the lack of media support with the Switch. Sure, you can access Hulu and YouTube on the Switch, but there is no option to play your own content as there is no officially supported media playback app.
Powering and Power
Being powered by a custom Tegra processor from Nvidia, allows it to be fairly energy efficient while still offering great mobile graphics. Though Nintendo has never really cared about ultra-realistic graphics and their games usually look and feel way more cartoon-like than its competition. When it comes to battery life, Nintendo claim about 7 hours of runtime from their 4310mAh battery, however in reality the Switch doesn’t last quite as long while gaming at full blast. The upside is that the Switch has a USB Type-C charging port and can be recharged fairly quickly so that you can get back to gaming as soon as possible. Obviously when the Switch is in the docking station it will be connected to the built in charger, meaning you can game for hours on end just like on any other console.
You get 32GB of storage, which can be extended to up to 2TB thanks to a reliable microSDXC card. However, you cannot store media such as music and videos on the Switch, so opting for a card with a massive amount of storage is a waste for most users. We recommend a good 64GB microSD card, as it offers a good amount of space without breaking the bank.
The console comes with two Joy-Con controllers (one left and one right), which can be disconnected from the Switch and can be docked into the Joy-Con grip for a more comfortable sofa gaming experience. The Joy-Con controllers feature what Nintendo calls HD Rumble, which is a just their fancy name for their haptic feedback system. Nintendo have added numerous vibration motors to the controllers and Nintendo claim that you can feel the individual ice cubes falling into a glass, though some users will opt to turn off the vibration feature all together. One major downside is that the Joy-Con controllers can be used for multiplayer mode with great titles such as Mario Kart, however, they are really small and uncomfortable to use for prolonged gaming sessions. Even worse, if you have larger hands you might get the dreaded hand cramp while gaming.
Overall the Switch is a great piece of gaming tech and a far cry from the Wii U (Nintendo’s previous console) which has helped it become a firm favorite among younger gamers and those looking to relive their gaming youth. If you love the Nintendo style of games or if you are looking for a little something to brighten up your boring daily commute, then this is the console for you. It’s available in two colors, Neon Blue and Red and Gray, however you can swap out the Joy-Con controllers for ones in different colors.
Great handheld gaming experience
Awesome selection of exclusive games
Average battery life
No dedicated media player
No 4K via the TV dock