Nintendo’s new Switch with an OLED screen appears to be a promising option for those looking for a larger, more vibrant display on which to play games. That is reason for celebration (despite the apparent lack of internal spec improvements), but I am equally pleased that Nintendo revised the truly awful kickstand found in the original Switch. Instead of the flimsy, fragile stand that wobbles (or breaks if you’re unlucky), the new one borrows from Microsoft’s Surface Pro tablets — and appears to be a lot better for it.
The kickstand on the new Switch console is much wider, extending across the entire bottom part of the tablet to better support its weight. According to Nintendo’s announcement video, the improved kickstand now supports custom adjustments, giving you more ways to use it comfortably. Another nice touch is the slot in the middle of the kickstand for a USB-C cable to pass through so you can charge while playing.
Several Switch multiplayer and single-player games will benefit from this improved kickstand when they release this year. Nintendo announced new Mario Party and WarioWare games, as well as a remaster of the first two Advance War games, at the E3 2021 convention. Metroid Dread will also be released on October 8th, the same day the Switch with OLED will be released.
Despite being nearly five years old, the original Switch hardware has endured due to its clever and well-built design, as well as its reliance on standards such as USB-C and microSD. The fiddly kickstand was a major flaw, and it’s great to see Nintendo has improved it in the new OLED version. I’m not saying it’s worth upgrading to this new $349.99 console just for the kickstand, but it will certainly sweeten the deal if you use the Switch in portable mode or see yourself doing so in the future.
It would be ideal if Nintendo’s learnings trickled down to the less expensive model, primarily because an improved kickstand would be an odd feature to reserve for the company’s most expensive console. Perhaps we’ll learn more about it as the release date approaches on October 8th.