Nintendo Plans Changes to the Original Switch

Nintendo Switch Pictured with charging dock

Nintendo is having quite the week. With Pokemon news on Monday, Dr. Mario World on Tuesday, and today, new Nintendo Switch news. With the announcement of the Switch Pro and the Lite, gamers everywhere are examining their budgets and looking at the specifications and or just planning to get both.

With the two new consoles announced, this news might not be earth-shattering to some, but as reported by the Verge, the original Switch is getting some nice tender loving upgrades.

Nintendo submitted a "Request for Class II Permissive Change" for the Nintendo Switch console to the FCC on July 2, 2019. The letter details the small changes that are headed to the original Switch. First, is the "SoC Type" change. Now I had no idea what this was. I consider myself technologically savvy, but that was lost on me. Thankfully both the Verge mentioned above and ExtremeTech have my back in this.

SoC stands for "system-on-chip." This is the part of the device that contains things like the graphics processor, the RAM, the CPU cores, and various other acronyms representing functional computer parts. Nothing specific is addressed. It could be changed to any one of these, or more than one. As the Verge points out, the graphics card on the Nintendo Switch is roughly four years old now. By technology standards, that might as well be a fossil. It's possible, then, that the SoC change listed could be a new graphics card.

The second change is "Change of NAND Memory type." I'm happy Google exists because I am not as technologically adept as I thought. NAND Memory is a flash memory system, designed to maximize space and keep the memory from competing with other storage systems. Additionally, as the Verge points out, it is commonly found on SSD drives. Finally, one I recognize. Solid-state drives (or SSDs) are drives for computers. They serve a similar function to hard drives, but they tend to have smaller storage overall. What they lack in storage, they make up for in speed and load times. It's perhaps not surprising that Nintendo utilizes SSDs in their devices.

The final change is to the CPU board as a result of the first two changes.

These changes could mean many things. It could be faster loading since something with the NAND memory, and SSD is getting changed. Or better graphics. Or nothing noticeable! For all we know, Nintendo might just be updating the original Switch to keep it up to date with the current and ever-evolving technology. We'll see what details the future brings.

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