According to insider sources cited by VGC, Nintendo is reportedly gearing up for a significant leap, with a new generation console set to debut in the latter half of 2024. With the plans now in motion, the company seems keen to avoid the stock shortage issues that beleaguered competitors Sony and Microsoft with their PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X|S launches.
These confidential sources, who reportedly have insight into Nintendo’s strategic developments, suggest that the forthcoming console will continue the company’s tradition of supporting portable gaming, similar to the Nintendo Switch. The decision to include an LCD screen over a premium OLED one seems to be driven by cost-cutting considerations, particularly given the necessity for more storage to support higher-fidelity games.
As indicated by the insiders, fans of Nintendo’s signature physical games will be pleased to learn that the next-gen console will maintain the option of cartridge slots for fun. However, the issue of backward compatibility with Switch games, a feature of high interest to the console’s significant user base, remains an unclear aspect of the new console’s feature set.
The planned launch timeline makes strategic sense for Nintendo, significantly as Switch hardware and software sales are projected to decline this year, seven years after the Switch’s debut. A Tokyo-based industry consultant, Dr. Serkan Toto, told VGC it’s “clear that it’s time for a new piece of hardware in 2024.”
Christopher Dring, ReedPop’s head of games B2B, also noted that this timing is consistent with Nintendo’s historical pattern of ‘mid-cycle’ hardware launches relative to competitors Sony and Microsoft.
However, he also underscored the challenge Nintendo faces in terms of convincing its more casual, family-orientated user base to transition to the new hardware. The approach to digital libraries, account management, and potential backward compatibility could be pivotal to the next console’s initial success.
The report suggests that if Nintendo aims for a pre-Christmas launch, the company could offer a deeper line-up of titles than seen at the Switch’s initial launch. Nintendo has yet to comment on these reported plans, thus leaving fans and industry observers eager to learn more about the next chapter in the company’s storied gaming journey.