Earlier today, Nintendo officially announced the Nintendo Switch (formerly known as the NX) and just as previous rumours predicted, it is a home console/handheld hybrid. While the three-minute trailer gave us a look at what sort of games to expect on the system and how it works, it didn’t dive into specs. Fortunately, Nvidia has come out with some information on what’s under the hood, with the Switch’s GPU likely being based on the Pascal architecture.
Nvidia has been working on its Tegra processors for years, with a few of them featuring in Nvidia’s own Shield devices. The Tegra found in the Nintendo Switch is based on a custom design with a high-efficiency, scalable processor that includes an Nvidia GPU that is “based on the same architecture as the world’s top-performing GeForce gaming graphics cards”. From the sounds of it, it could be a Pascal chip inside of the Switch, though we are awaiting confirmation on that.
It’s not just the Tegra chip that Nvidia worked on though, the Nintendo Switch is also backed by custom software: “The Nintendo Switch’s gaming experience is also supported by fully custom software, including a revamped physics engine, new libraries, advanced game tools and libraries. NVIDIA additionally created new gaming APIs to fully harness this performance. The newest API, NVN, was built specifically to bring lightweight, fast gaming to the masses.”
Right now, the Xbox One and PS4 are running AMD chips, so there will be a bit of a learning curve for developers looking to release games on the Nintendo Switch. However, that hasn’t stopped an impressive number of publishers and studios signing on to support the system, including Bethesda, EA, Ubisoft, From Software, Warner Bros, Epic Games, Square Enix, TakeTwo and more.
The Nintendo Switch is coming out in March 2017, so we will start seeing more information pop up as we get closer to the time.
KitGuru Says: The Nintendo Switch looks impressive judging by the preview released earlier today. However, there is some concern surrounding battery life and performance while the console is in its portable mode. It will certainly be interesting to see what the console is capable of when we can get our hands on it next year.