What you need to know
- You can currently buy the new Switch with improved battery life.
- Online stores aren't making it easy to tell if you're buying the new or old model.
- The new model's packaging design is slightly different from the original Switch.
- The model number for the new Switch is HAC-001 (-01)
Nintendo's updated version of the original Switch console has quietly begun sneaking onto shelves. If you're looking to get your hands on one of these longer-lasting hybrids, there are a few things to note.
First off, the packaging design for the new model is slightly different from the original. It shows different images on the front and back of the box with a dominant red replacing the original's white space. So basically, just remember that the new model will be in the packaging that shows a red background. The newer version also has a different model number from the original. When looking to buy the longer-lasting Switch, you'll be looking for the model number that reads HAC-001 (-01), which is different from the original's model number of HAC-001.
Unfortunately, right now online sellers, including Amazon and Best Buy, aren't making it easy to tell if you'll be purchasing a new or old version of the Switch. The best way to ensure you're getting the right one is to go in person and pick one up at a physical location. If online buying is preferable or your only choice, just be prepared to return it if you get the wrong model.
The hybrid console
This gaming system switches from a TV console to a handheld device. There are currently hundreds of games with more arriving every day. It's unclear whether this purchase will give you a new model or the original.
The smaller more portable Switch
This is a dedicated handheld gaming system that can play Nintendo Switch games. It's smaller than the original Switch and has longer-lasting battery life. Choose between Yellow, Turquoise, or Gray.
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Gaming aficionado Rebecca Spear is iMore's dedicated gaming editor with a focus on Nintendo Switch and iOS gaming. You’ll never catch her without her Switch or her iPad Air handy. If you’ve got a question about Pokémon, The Legend of Zelda, or just about any other Nintendo series check out her guides to help you out. Rebecca has written thousands of articles in the last six years including hundreds of extensive gaming guides, previews, and reviews for both Switch and Apple Arcade. She also loves checking out new gaming accessories like iPhone controllers and has her ear to the ground when it comes to covering the next big trend.