Hot on the heels of the new Switch Lite, Nintendo announced an updated Switch that ups the battery life from 2.5 to 6.5 hours to a much more reasonable 4.5 to 9 hours. That’s a pretty significant improvement.
What it’s not announcing, however, is what made this battery improvement possible. Still, we can speculate, and it’s most likely due to a processor upgrade. Not only does the Switch Lite feature a slightly tweaked chip to bolster its battery life, but, but a recent FCC listing showed off a slightly updated Switch with a new CPU and storage. That’s what this new Switch is.
But here’s the real fun part: you’ll have to pay close attention to which model of Switch you’re buying to get the best battery life—at least in the short term while Nintendo sells all the backstock of the original unit. The new Switch has a Model Number of HAC-001(-01), while the original is just HAC-001. You’ll need to take a close look at that, but you can also confirm by checking the serial number—the original model starts with XAW, while the upgraded model starts with XKW. They couldn’t make this easy, could they?
Now, all that said, it doesn’t look the upgraded Switch is available just yet. According to Kotaku, you should be able to pick up the new console starting “this August.”