President Donald Trump has proposed a 25 percent tariff on imports from China, which is where many video game consoles are manufactured, including the Nintendo Switch. Some have predicted that this tariff on China will in turn increase the cost of video game consoles in the United States, potentially cutting into profits for companies and raising prices for consumers. This includes Nintendo, who has reportedly moved its Switch production from China to Southeast Asia to avoid losing any profits from console sales.
This report comes from The Wall Street Journal, who claims that Nintendo shifted production of not just one Switch model, but three Switch models in the move from China to Southeast Asia. Nintendo has the standard Switch model in production, as well as an upgraded version referred to by fans as the Switch Pro, and a cheaper version that's rumored to be handheld-only.
What's more is that since these Nintendo Switch revisions are apparently in active production, it could be a sign that they will release sooner rather than later. One would imagine that such a big announcement would be made at E3 2019, but maybe Nintendo expected some backlash from announcing new Switch models (as often happens whenever a company announces a hardware revision), and wanted to come out of E3 with positive buzz about its software announcements.
Then again, fans really shouldn't be surprised that Nintendo is potentially making two new Nintendo Switch models. After all, the company has been releasing hardware revisions for decades now, and its latest handheld console, the 3DS, had the standard, XL, and cheaper 2DS versions. Nintendo found a great deal of success with the 3DS and its revisions, so it makes sense for the company to pursue similar things with the Switch.
Assuming the new Nintendo Switch models are truly in active production as reported by The Wall Street Journal, then it seems likely that they will be out by the end of the year. Pricing and release date information on the rumored cheaper Switch and Switch Pro should be available in the coming months, though we expect that the consoles will launch in the holiday season.
Source: The Wall Street Journal