Nintendo Switch Hybrid Console Expected To Deliver Mario, Zelda Gaming Goodness For Under $250

Gamers will have a new console to choose from in a couple of months. It is the Nintendo Switch, a hybrid gaming system that is built both for playing games on a big screen TV and for portable gameplay. Nintendo has not yet announced a price for its forthcoming system (along with a lot of other details), though according to Japanese-language news report, consumers should expect to pay around 25,000 yen (around $215 in U.S. currency).

That is a roundabout estimation by Nikkei, the same Japanese-language paper that revealed key details about several of Nintendo's previous game consoles ahead of their official launch or unveiling, including the Nintendo DSi and 3DS handhelds, and the Wii U system. It predicted the latter would debut at 30,000 yen—the Basic Set launched at 26,250 yen ($299 in the U.S.) and the Deluxe carried an initial MSRP of 31,500 yen ($349 in the U.S.).

Nintendo Switch

While the 25,000 yen estimation is not based on any official information or even an inside source, the site has a positive track record when it comes to these things. It is also an interesting prediction when you compare the Nintendo Switch to the price of consoles that came before it, both from Nintendo and other manufacturers (Sony and Microsoft). Pricing the hybrid console at less than $250 would make it an attractive buy, particularly considering its ability to function as two consoles in one.

Nintendo has been really good about keeping details regarding the Switch under lock and key. There have been a few leaks here and there, but nothing substantial. That said, the wait for more information is nearing an end—Nintendo previously announced that it would share pricing information and other details about the Switch during a January 12 livestream event, which is now just a few days away.

Hopefully at that time Nintendo will also address whether or not the Switch's battery will be removable. A recent FCC filing indicated that the Switch's battery would be a permanent fixture, and if that's the case, it would be a major buzz kill for a system that is intended to be portable. Batteries can only be recharged so many times before they lose the ability to hold one, at which point the Switch would no longer be portable (not without a power outlet nearby).