Nintendo has officially unveiled UK pricing and availability for its Tegra-powered portable games console, the Switch, which will cost you £279.99 and drop into your hands on March 3rd.
Previously known as the Nintendo NX before an October 2016 unveiling
which gave it the name Nintendo Switch, the hybrid console is based around Nvidia's Tegra X1 system-on-chip processor running behind a 6.2in 720p touch-screen display and with 32GB of storage. When used on-the-go, the Switch acts as a 720p battery-powered hand-held running at reduced clock speeds; when inserted into the toaster-like desktop docking station, it switches to a 1080p full-speed microconsole - hence the name Nintendo Switch.
A key feature of the Switch is its Joy-Con controllers, which slide onto the side of the console for single-unit hand-held gaming or attach to a battery pack when the console is in its dock and can also be used as Wii-style motion-sensors. Each Switch bundle comes with the console, dock, left and right Joy-Con controllers,
non-charging plastic Joy-Con grip, wrist straps, power supply, and HDMI cable, and will be priced in the UK at £279.99.
One big piece of information revealed by Nintendo during its announcement last night was the Switch's projected battery life. Despite dropping the GPU clocks dramatically while running on battery, the tablet-style console doesn't run for very long away from an external power source: While hinting at 'up to six
' hours of use per charge, the company admitted that active gameplay use will be closer to three hours, using its upcoming Zelda game as a baseline.
The Switch is also to bring Nintendo's first paid-for online gaming service, bringing it to parity with Sony's PlayStation Network and Microsoft's Xbox Live platforms. The service will be required for remote multiplayer gaming on 'most games
,' Nintendo admitted, but will come with a free Virtual Console game each month. Pricing has not been confirmed.
The Switch is to launch in the UK on March 3rd, with pre-orders available at all major retailers now. Available accessories include a more traditional joypad dubbed the Switch Pro Controller priced at £64.99, additional Joy-Con controllers at £74.99 the pair, a version of the Joy-Con grip which actually charges your controllers for £27.99, and games ranging from £39.99 to £59.99 with collector's editions priced at £89.99.