When Nintendo finally unveiled the Switch OLED Model, impressions were mixed – it wasn’t a more powerful system, it was not the mythical ‘Switch Pro’. Instead, we were looking at a more incremental upgrade: the existing model improved via a larger, OLED panel along with quality of life improvements including a more robust kickstand. On the face of it then, perhaps not a big deal. However, the truth is that the Switch OLED Model will live or die according to the quality of its screen – and as an OLED enthusiast, I was really looking forward to checking it out. And the truth is, it’s a big, big upgrade to the handheld gaming experience.
The first thing you’ll notice when you take the Switch OLED out of the package is the quality of the new materials. The screen is now glossy, as is the bezel around it. The rail system that holds the Joycons in place feels more solid with less wobble and the whole device simply feels like a more premium design. Along the top, numerous changes are made to core elements: the power and volume buttons are different in shape and feel while the game card slot now uses a slimmer cover, which is slightly trickier to open than the original Switch.