Nintendo Switch Pro: Does the new Switch work with 4K?

Will a 4K-compatible Switch help Nintendo keep up in the next-gen of consoles?

by Oliver Barsby

When the Nintendo Switch launched in March 2017, it was heralded for bringing Nintendo back into the console market for third-party titles. The Witcher 3, Skyrim and Borderlands 3 are all now available on the Switch, but as we fast approach the start of the next-gen of consoles, fans fear that Nintendo may struggle to keep up.

However, rather than just focus on first-party titles until they release a new console and leave the Switch behind, it appears Nintendo is intending to release a Nintendo Switch Pro– a new and improved Switch with significant hardware improvements and now, based on recent reports, huge a graphical upgrade.

READ MORE: Wii games on Nintendo Switch: Will Super Mario Galaxy open the door to more?

Keep reading to find out how the Nintendo Switch Pro could work with an improved GPU to deliver better-looking gameplay.

Will the Switch Pro run in 4K?

According to reports from Bloomberg, Nintendo is asking its development partners to “make their games 4K-ready”, citing several anonymous developers as a source.

If true, this would be strong evidence that Nintendo plans to release a Switch Pro compatible with 4K monitors or TVs that are becoming more prevalent, especially as we near the release of the PS5 and Xbox Series X.

However, reports from Techradar earlier this year suggest that Nintendo is working with Nvidia on a custom Tegra processor, and won’t include the Tegra X1+ chip that many had expected the console to feature. As a result, 4K support may not be an option for the Switch Pro.

READ MORE: When is the next Nintendo Direct?

Will the Switch Pro run in 4K in Handheld Mode?

While it would certainly be impressive, we don’t expect a Switch Pro will include a 4K-compatible screen on the console. With many games still running in 720p when undocked, the upgrade for a 4K screen seems unfeasible, especially if Nintendo intends to keep the costs down.

Instead, it’s more likely that Nintendo will prioritise ensuring that games run in a crisp 1080p, and hopefully with at least 30FPS when undocked.


BOTW2
Breath of the Wild 2 in 4K 60FPS would be INSANE

Does the Switch Pro need 4K?

While many Nintendo fans would love to play the likes of Breath of the Wild and even Animal Crossing: New Horizons in stunning 4K glory, questions can be asked as to whether 4K is needed on the Switch.


Nintendo’s USP is its games. The love, passion and dedication for all things Nintendo is unmatched by any other games developer or publisher. Nintendo’s target market is less concerned with graphical fidelity than it is fun, exciting gameplay that the company is known for.

However, third-party sales do benefit Nintendo greatly, not only in sales but also enticing over gamers who are not diehard Nintendo fans. If Nintendo plans on extending the Switch’s lifecycle further, as it did with both the DS/3DS with upgraded hardware, 4K-compatible gaming is a great starting point.

READ MORE Is the Nintendo Switch getting a chunky new single-player Joy-Con controller?

Oliver Barsby