While we await news on the rumoured Nintendo Switch Pro, it's natural that everyone is on tenterhooks waiting for any sign that it could be on its way. There are lots of little ways that secrets can spill out of a company, and it's rare that things stay completely hidden up until they're officially announced. This is true of most companies, but Nintendo tends to keep things close to the chest for longer, and it's very unusual indeed to find out about things through a mere slip-up.
Well, Nintendo has just filed a new patent with the Japanese Patent Office for something called the Nintendo Switch Lite. Wait; what? It turns out that Nintendo hadn't actually submitted this patent prior to the console coming out and have instead submitted it six-months after the handheld actually released. This is somewhat unusual, but not completely unheard of thanks the grace period that many companies are allowed when registering new designs.
It's likely that this was done to stop leakers getting any hard-proof to show when suggesting that this skew of the console was on the way. If this is something that Nintendo is going to start doing more of, at least when it comes to potential Switch versions, then it's likely that we'll see more of it going forwards. While Nintendo says they're not currently working on a Nintendo Switch Pro, that could easily either be misdirection or simply a statement saying that they're not doing so as of yet.
It could also be completely true, and they're simply calling it something different. Maybe it'll be called the Nintendo Super Switch? What it's called is largely irrelevant, but there's certainly an increasing need for a more powerful version, especially with both the Xbox Series X and PS5 coming out this year. Without an increase in power, and perhaps an SSD involved, the Nintendo Switch will be a little too far behind the competition.
While Nintendo does very well despite generally using technically less impressive technology, there has to be a limit at some point. The increase in processing power and loading speeds thanks to the new consoles is something that would be immediately felt on the current version of the Switch, which often lags behind the PS4 and Xbox One when it comes to loading times as it is. Without more power, it'll be hard to view the Switch as anything other than a handheld, rather than the spectacular hybrid console that it started out as.