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Forums - Nintendo Discussion - Could Nintendo keep the Switch going until the launch of the 10th gen consoles?

7-10 years Switch lifetime

2023 Q4/2024Q3 Switch successor.



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I guess it really depends. Could they "keep the Switch going"...yes. The 3DS just ended production this year, and it started production in 2011, and the DS started in 2004 and ended in 2013. That's nine years for both. If this were to happen to the Switch then production would end in 2026. However, both seventh gen and eighth gen lasted at least 7 years before their successors came. It is possible that this could be the new norm. If this is the case then 2027 would likely be the year the next consoles come out, depending on technological advances.

This being said...I do not expect Nintendo to solely have the Switch from 2017 to 2026. I'd imagine in 2024 they will launch a new console, maybe sooner.



Yes.



Well, we currently expect Switch to peak in 2020 or 2021. Which would mean the sales would go down over the coming years, as Switch hits saturation. So it seems unlikely. As others said, a possibility is an early launch of the next-gen, which seems unlikely even if PS5 and Series fail.

But, there is some historical precedence for an elongated lifetime. The Gameboy. The reasons for the Gameboys long lifetime are Gameboy Color and Pokemon. So there is a chance, if Nintendo releases a Switch model everyone wants because of some feature (not more power, but something like color over black and white) which everyone wants. And/Or a new game that catches on fire and brings a completely new audience into gaming.

That seems unlikely, but possible.



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Sure, they can keep it long enough going to have the Switch successor launch closer to the PS6 than Switch launched to the PS5. Nintendo has reiterated several times that a new console isn't coming anytime soon, because Switch still has plenty of opportunities left.

What people keep forgetting when talking about Switch is that it's in both the home console and handheld market. In these first four years Switch has sold first and foremost to home console gamers, but this doesn't mean that it's close to the saturation point on that front yet. After all, the Wii sold 100m units with crippled third party support, so the ceiling for a Nintendo home console with good software support is notably higher than that value. On the other hand, Switch has only scratched the surface of the handheld market, because even Switch Lite is rather pricey. Once Switch comes close to saturation in the home console market, it still has plenty of life left in it because of more and more people adding secondary and tertiary Switch units to their households.

Hardware revisions are a major boon here, especially if they are properly spaced out. We've had the original Switch for almost four years now, so that's already a long enough timeframe for many to consider an all-around improved revision for purchase. The same will hold true for another handheld-only SKU down the line.

All factors considered, a Switch successor launch in 2025 or 2026 is certainly feasible. It won't matter if it turns out that 2020 was Switch's peak year, because a peak doesn't need to be followed by a downward slope. For consoles with strong software support it's very common that the peak is followed by a plateau, so there's no good reason to worry about Switch. It won't be market forces that can prevent Switch from going that long, because Switch's unique value proposition will not be seriously challenged by anyone, plus nowadays a huge amount of gamers doesn't need more processing power because non-realistic graphics look already so good. The only threat to Switch is Nintendo deciding to release a new console prematurely, but they should be more careful about rushed decisions in their current situation where the vast majority of their business rests on the shoulders of a single console, so a repeat of the DS and Wii generation where new hardware was pushed out regardless of enough software being ready for it is unlikely.



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RolStoppable said:

Sure, they can keep it long enough going to have the Switch successor launch closer to the PS6 than Switch launched to the PS5. Nintendo has reiterated several times that a new console isn't coming anytime soon, because Switch still has plenty of opportunities left.

What people keep forgetting when talking about Switch is that it's in both the home console and handheld market. In these first four years Switch has sold first and foremost to home console gamers, but this doesn't mean that it's close to the saturation point on that front yet. After all, the Wii sold 100m units with crippled third party support, so the ceiling for a Nintendo home console with good software support is notably higher than that value. On the other hand, Switch has only scratched the surface of the handheld market, because even Switch Lite is rather pricey. Once Switch comes close to saturation in the home console market, it still has plenty of life left in it because of more and more people adding secondary and tertiary Switch units to their households.

Hardware revisions are a major boon here, especially if they are properly spaced out. We've had the original Switch for almost four years now, so that's already a long enough timeframe for many to consider an all-around improved revision for purchase. The same will hold true for another handheld-only SKU down the line.

All factors considered, a Switch successor launch in 2025 or 2026 is certainly feasible. It won't matter if it turns out that 2020 was Switch's peak year, because a peak doesn't need to be followed by a downward slope. For consoles with strong software support it's very common that the peak is followed by a plateau, so there's no good reason to worry about Switch. It won't be market forces that can prevent Switch from going that long, because Switch's unique value proposition will not be seriously challenged by anyone, plus nowadays a huge amount of gamers doesn't need more processing power because non-realistic graphics look already so good. The only threat to Switch is Nintendo deciding to release a new console prematurely, but they should be more careful about rushed decisions in their current situation where the vast majority of their business rests on the shoulders of a single console, so a repeat of the DS and Wii generation where new hardware was pushed out regardless of enough software being ready for it is unlikely.

Good post. For me it's just hard to tell when the saturation point is reached. If they bring out a Pro model and/or revisions, obviously, the saturation point can be somewhat extended. However, I think yours is an ideal situation and if it plays out like that, i.e. home console market is not yet saturated, followed by a huge potential of the handheld market, is hard to tell. It's the first ever hybrid console in the market, we have no precedence. I really would love to see it going for years to come, especially as past Nintendo home consoles saturated early.



Nintendo marches to the beat of their own drum, they should release Switch 2 when it makes the most sense with regards to their own product lifecycle and not be dictated to by the lifecycles of Playstation/Xbox.

Presuming PS6/Xbox 5 release in 2027, then yes it makes sense for Switch to last that long before being discontinued, but not without being replaced.



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By "keep going" do you mean keep selling and manufacturing it? Or do you mean keep it as its main platform until the launch of its successor?
If it's the former, then maybe they could. I mean the 3DS got discontinued in September, then PS5/XSXS launched in November, so it just barely missed the mark. And depending on when PS6 and the next Xbox come out, if it's as late as 2027, it may not last until then either.

If it's the latter, then no; And it's got nothing to do with Sony and Microsoft.
Every console has its shelf life and has a saturation point where they start to steadily decline and soon need to be replaced. And the original Game Boy was approaching that point in late '95-'96. Then Pokémon happened and took the world by storm. Add the Game Boy Color on top of that and it was like the Game Boy got this second life or a 1-Up 'shroom and it reached unprecedented heights at the time. But that was the one and only time something like that happened and the chances of that happening again are slim to none. Unless the Switch experiences another Pokémon-like phenomenon (Although some would say Animal Crossing: New Horizons fits that bill) the Switch is not going to have that same luxury. I do think it'll enjoy a longer life cycle than past Nintendo handhelds like the DS and 3DS, which each got 6 1/2 and 6 years respectively before their successor came out. But they're not going to for Sony and Microsoft to announce and release their next systems because the Switch is not going to last that long and its just not a financially smart decision to keep all their eggs in that basket when the basket is starting to fall apart from the bottom.

Last edited by PAOerfulone - on 21 January 2021

The Switch has found a lot of success by distancing itself from the other console releases and consequently driving itself away from console wars. I don't know if that was something Nintendo planned all along, maybe it was just a result of them rushing it out due to the Wii U's failure, but I think they know this is a core reason why it's doing so well, so I'm very much expecting the next one to come out mid-gen again, probably in 2024.




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Well I mean the Gameboy was released in 1989 and didn't get replaced until 2001. So the gameboy lasted all the way to the 6th generation. So it is more than possible. I expect them to do something like that as well. There really is no reason to release a new system just to get more power nowadays for Nintendo. It is not like they can release a portable that suddenly every AAA developer will start making games for it. So the only reason Nintendo would release a new system is when the technical limits are very limiting. That might not happen for a couple of years now. Nintendo 1st party games do not exactly push the technical bar to sell systems.

I would not be surprised if they wait until 2026 or 2027 to release a new system. If Nintendo wants a good slate of 1st party releases for a new system then they need to coordinate all of the games to release that year. I expect the next batch of games to come around this year or next. So if that happens then 2026 or 2027 will be when the next batch is ready.

You know what they will probably just wait until the launch of the 10th generation of systems to launch it.



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