Preorders for the new OLED Nintendo Switch will start at 3PM ET / 12PM PT today


The Verge 15 July, 2021 - 09:32am 14 views

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Nintendo’s “OLED model” Switch estimated to cost just $10 more to produce

Ars Technica 15 July, 2021 - 02:52pm

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The recently announced "OLED model" of the Nintendo Switch will retail for $50 more than the $300 standard model when the upgrade goes on sale on October 1. But the new model is estimated to cost Nintendo only about $10 more to produce, increasing the company's profit margins on the high end of its still-hot gaming hardware.

That cost estimate comes from Bloomberg News' Takashi Mochizuki, who breaks down the estimated production cost increase like this:

Historically, many console-makers have sold their hardware at cost or at a loss in order to attract a bigger audience of potential customers for software (and the console-maker licensing fees that come with it). But while Nintendo initially sold the Wii U at a loss, it has made a profit on every Switch hardware sale since its launch, with estimates at the time suggesting that the $300 system cost about $260 to produce (per unit) in 2017.

That's a bit surprising, as the median console usually sees its first price drop two years or so after its initial launch. But it's also not too surprising in this case because the Switch is still selling incredibly well at its original price.

That said, even the successful PS4 saw its first price drop less than two years after its US launch, and the hot-selling Wii got a price drop less than three years after its launch. The Switch, by contrast, has already passed its fourth anniversary without a change to its launch price.

Regardless, the manufacturing costs of the new OLED model are only one part of the pricing equation. The real question is whether consumers as a whole will see the improved screen and other tweaks to the hardware as worth $50, a nearly 17 percent jump in asking price. Nintendo's hardware-pricing moves in 2022 will go a long way toward answering that question.

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Nintendo Switch OLED pre-order: what time to get it today at Best Buy, Target and Amazon

TechRadar 15 July, 2021 - 09:37am

You'll be able to pre-order the Nintendo Switch OLED today at 3pm EDT at Target, Best Buy and GameStop. Here's how to get an alert.

Get a Twitter alert: Our Nintendo Switch OLED pre-order expert Matt Swider will send you an alert when the new Nintendo Switch OLED model is in stock – if you follow his Twitter account and turn on notifications. Retailers like Best Buy, Target, Walmart, Amazon and GameStop already have pages live where you'll be able to buy Nintendo Switch OLED in the US.

Click on this example of a Matt Swider Nintendo Switch OLED tweet. When he has a tweet with a siren, that means it's in stock and a link will be included. Make sure you follow and turn on notifications.

Here are the Nintendo Switch pre-order landing pages so far.

There's a very good reason to pre-order the Nintendo Switch OLED today (or whenever it actually becomes available to buy), and that's because it's going to sell out in a matter of minutes – maybe seconds. We've seen the ongoing chip shortage affect other consoles in 2021, which is why we constantly have to run PS5 restock news stories – it's still in demand several months later.

And if you think the Switch OLED model is a minor Nintendo Switch upgrade (you're not alone) and it won't be sold out (that's wrong), then you have to realize that before all of these shortages came to a head and when the original Nintendo Switch seemed long in the tooth, the four-year-old Nintendo console was still selling out every Christmas. That's four Christmases in a row.

In other words, if you want to buy a Nintendo Switch OLED, do it now. There's going to be unprecedented demand for it in 2021 and yet a finite supply of consoles. Plus, the Nintendo Switch OLED price is $349, hardly a barrier to entry for a gift in 2021.

The people who aren't going to be able to buy this console on October 8 through December 31 are the people who hesitate on the pre-order, according to our expert opinion. Cue the Nintendo Switch OLED restock chaos that will soon ensue.

Nintendo Switch OLED retailers in the US are gearing up to start pre-orders today at 3pm EDT / 12pm PDT, according to the official Nintendo of America Twitter account.

It's already available to pre-purchase in other countries, so Nintendo of America is playing catch-up here. But that's probably a good thing as hopefully retailers have been given time to figure out a safe fair that real gamers can buy the console. 

There's a good chance we'll have to keep updating a Nintendo Switch OLED tracker for all stores in the US, as demand will surely outstrip supply into 2022.

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The Nintendo Switch OLED's Ethernet Port Doesn't Fix The Real Problem

GameRant 14 July, 2021 - 10:42am

Since the release of the original Nintendo Switch, fans have been asking for wired LAN support, and this will hopefully address some of the stability issues of games like Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. Although a wired ethernet adapter has been available for some time now, the Nintendo Switch OLED will have it hardwired into the dock. While this is a nice change for fans looking to get a new Nintendo Switch, it unfortunately won't fix Nintendo's poor online experience.

Of course, if this was the only issue with Nintendo Switch's online experience, then it would not be a big deal. However, the Nintendo Switch also has serious issues with netcode, and for competitive games like Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, this can be a huge setback for players looking to improve. Many Nintendo Switch games use a peer-to-peer architecture called Pia for online play. Although there's a common misconception that P2P architectures cause lag or latency, the reality is that the Nintendo Switch has a poor implementation of netcode. While dedicated servers could theoretically improve smoothness, there are inherent issues in how the netcode is being executed.

The other approach would be rollback netcode, an approach that will simulate or predict upcoming frame inputs and "rolls back" to the correct input if there are networking delays. When the remote inputs come in, it's likely that the game will have already shown a different result on the screen. However, rollback netcode will rewind the simulation, apply the correct input, and immediately show the result to the player. Essentially, the game might be showing slightly different things to the players but will correct itself once the inputs have been received. Although Nintendo has considered rollback netcode for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, it was passed on for allegedly having too many side effects.

Part of the issue lies in the Nintendo Switch's limited hardware. Of course, it's unreasonable to expect CS:GO or Overwatch levels of tick-rate given that the Switch can't even support the types of framerates that PC can. On the other hand, there's no reason that Nintendo can't get rid of an archaic system like delay-based netcode when so many modern fighting games implement rollback netcode. Furthermore, Nintendo could easily invest in dedicated servers in conjunction with improving implementation of the networking code. While this is only speculation, it does seem to be a conscious choice to save on development costs. Marketing a built-in Ethernet port also feels like a way to sidestep the issue, placing blame on players' Internet instead.

In a lot of ways, the new Ethernet port on the Nintendo Switch OLED is overhyped for what it actually brings to the table. All of the players who actually needed an Ethernet connection will have likely acquired an adapter long ago. A built-in Ethernet port is convenient, but it's doubtful that it will address the large number of connectivity issues that have plagued the Nintendo Switch since its inception. The Nintendo Switch OLED makes better network connections more accessible, but that doesn't necessarily mean that it addresses the core problem.

The Nintendo Switch OLED releases on October 8, 2021, worldwide.

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