Nintendo’s Next Game Console is Also a Hybrid Tablet – But Can You Read on It?

For the longest time Nintendo has maintained two lines of gaming devices: consoles and handhelds. Now the gaming company is combining the two into a single device.

Meet the Nintendo Switch.

The Switch is essentially a gaming tablet with an excess of accessories. In addition to the dock which effectively turns the tablet into a gaming console, the Switch also has a controller which can be attached to the Switch, turning it into a massive handheld, or the controller can be used wirelessly.

You can even pair two Switches and have four people playing head to head, each using half of a controller.

The Switch is the next logical step from the gaming tablets like the Nvidia Shield and the Chinese gaming tablets which have been popping up over the past few years.

The Shield had an optional wireless controller, but some of those Chinese gaming tablets had the joysticks and gaming buttons permanently mounted to either side of the screen. Nintendo has obviously learned from both designs and come up with a new gaming device that does everything - well, almost.

Nintendo is just announcing the Switch today, and we really don't know much about it. It's scheduled to be released in March, runs on an Nvidia chipset, and has some type of a cartridge setup for games.

So can you read on it?

Unlike the Shield and the earlier gaming tablets which run Android, the Switch is going to run a proprietary Nintendo OS. That means few to no apps, and while it will likely ship with a web browser all current signs point to there being no support for ebooks or other document formats.

TBH we don't know with any certainty whether it will support mp3 playback, so at this point even audiobook support is unclear.

Stay tuned.

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About Nate Hoffelder (11585 Articles)
Nate Hoffelder is the founder and editor of The Digital Reader:"I've been into reading ebooks since forever, but I only got my first ereader in July 2007. Everything quickly spiraled out of control from there. Before I started this blog in January 2010 I covered ebooks, ebook readers, and digital publishing for about 2 years as a part of MobileRead Forums. It's a great community, and being a member is a joy. But I thought I could make something out of how I covered the news for MobileRead, so I started this blog."

2 Comments on Nintendo’s Next Game Console is Also a Hybrid Tablet – But Can You Read on It?

  1. Presumably it has an SDK. Perhaps it is time for a first-person shooter reading app.

  2. While it likely will not have apps for general use, it should have web browser. Via that, you can use the Cloud Reader to read.

    I think it is refreshing to see a device that is mostly there to do one thing – play games instead of a multimedia center like the PS4.

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