The Nintendo Switch was released five years ago in March 2017 and is still the most unique product that can not only be a standalone console but also a handheld. It merges the best of both worlds, and Nintendo took a risk with it and reaped the rewards, as the community loved the idea.
The Japanese company produced a device that no other manufacturer dared to, a hybrid console that has the convenience of portability and the feel of gaming on the TV with friends. The Switch became the fastest-selling video game system of all time in the US after only ten months of its release, which speaks for itself.
There are lots of reasons that make it stand out in the console market.
Nintendo Switch is the most innovative video game console in decades
In the box, there is a docking station that connects to the TV or monitor, where the main system connects. The two sides of the console can be taken out and put together without the main body to make a controller that can be used several feet away from the system.
To game on the Nintendo Switch on the go, the primary device can simply be taken out of the docking station with the controller plugged back in on the sides, transitioning you from gaming on a TV screen to a handheld device without losing out on performance.
The handheld system's battery lasts from 3.5 hours to 6.5 hours, depending on usage.
The price is the most obvious thing that differentiates the Nintendo Switch from other consoles. At launch, it was priced at $299, which undercut other main consoles by a margin while offering an extensive library of games loved by a loyal fanbase.
In comparison, the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One were priced at $399 and $499 at launch, respectively.
Nintendo owns some of the biggest gaming franchises in history, including Mario, Pokemon, Animal Crossing, Super Smash Bros., Zelda, Donkey Kong, Tetris, and many more. No other console can be used to play these titles, making the Nintendo Switch an exclusive console.
Moreover, there are many third-party ports released on the gadget, including The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, Doom Eternal, The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, Mortal Kombat 11, Bioshock: The Collection, Dark Souls, etc., making it an all-rounder video game system that caters to a large audience.
The Switch has entirely different specifications from its competitors and is weaker in terms of performance. This is for a good reason, as it needs to run games in handheld mode, and cramming the strongest components is impossible in the compact body.
Moreover, the games released on Switch are not as big in size or graphically demanding compared to competitors' releases.
Titles have the potential to run at 1080p 60 FPS in handheld mode, whereas in dock mode, the same games run at 720p 60 FPS. The PS4 and Xbox One have robust hardware that runs games solely at 1080p, with some achieving 60 FPS.
All of the Switch's competitors have physical disk drives that can play 4K Ultra HD Blu-rays, but the Switch itself does not. All Switch games are available in cartridges or have to be downloaded and installed in the console's 32 GB built-in storage, which can be expanded by inserting a microSD card.
PlayStation 4 and Xbox One come with built-in storage of up to 1 TB.
Note: This article reflects the writer's subjective opinions.