Nintendo reveals that the new Switch console battery life will vary between 2.5 and 6 hours while outside of the dock depending on the gameplay experience on offer.
Since its announcement, gamers have had many questions about the Nintendo Switch, from its price to its release date to launch games. Outside of that, though, many wondered about the battery life of the new console while it is outside of the dock.
As part of its Nintendo Switch livestream event, Nintendo revealed that the Switch console will offer between 2.5 and 6 hours of play time while outside of the dock. The differences in use time will depend on the game and the experience that is on offer.
Unfortunately, Nintendo did not fully detail how exactly the battery life will be impacted by experiences. It would be safe to assume that if the joy-con controllers were being used outside of the Switch console, then the battery life might drain more quickly, but that might be the only case. According to Nintendo, the Switch console can play about 3 hours of The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild while undocked, which is on the low end of the battery life spectrum. It could be that the more graphically demanding the game is also plays a factor in its battery life.
If all games were to support 6 hours of battery life then that might be a different proposition, but 2.5 is going to be a struggle for some people. Essentially, 2.5 hours would support a reasonable commute to and from work, but only if the battery life didn’t fluctuate and if there was no excess drain in between.
Ever since the Nintendo Switch was revealed, gamers have questioned whether the device would be able to rival the mobile market in terms of its battery life. A home console on-the-go seemed to be the initial selling point for the Switch, but now it appears that it is simply one of its features. Like the Wii U before it, the Switch won’t be able to compete with the likes of the Nintendo 3DS, which is developed for true mobile gaming.
That being said, if Nintendo can find ways to get the battery life closer to 6 hours on most games then it might not be too much of a problem. Having a game like Super Mario Odyssey to pop on for an hour or two could prove to be a fun distraction.
Nintendo Switch releases March 3, 2017 for $299 USD or $399 CAD.