Nintendo Switch vs Wii U: How The Game Consoles Are Different

5 February 2017, 10:00 am EST By Maricris Francisco Tech Times
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With the upcoming launch of Nintendo Switch, comparisons are now being made between the unit and its predecessor, the Wii U. How are they different and how has Nintendo changed its strategy to win over gamers?  ( Nintendo )

Comparisons are now being made between the up-and-coming Nintendo Switch and the now-defunct Nintendo Wii U, and with good cause. The Wii U has been a major bust for Nintendo as it has become the slowest-selling console the company has ever produced.

This is mainly due to the lack of support it has received from third-party gaming developers, while its less-than-stellar battery life gives users only three to four hours of play time. Many also believe that the GamePad was launched at the wrong time, back when standalone tablets that could also play games were rising in popularity.

Nintendo Switch: What Would Be Different This Time Around?

Will the Switch be repeating the Wii U's dismal record? Not according to Reggie Fils-Aimé, Nintendo of America CEO. Fils-Aimé believes that the Nintendo Switch will be more successful than its predecessor because of its clearer selling proposition.

Both the Nintendo Switch and the Wii U are home game consoles that are accompanied by a second screen and allow for users to play games remotely. Despite their similarities, the two consoles are markedly different.

Display And Design

The Wii U GamePad was mainly used as a game controller, with remote play as its secondary function. On the other hand, the Switch connects to your TV and looks just like your regular home console when docked, but it can also be used as a portable gaming device that can be taken anywhere. This is because the games are running on the device directly rather than streamed from a box. The Joy-Con controllers located on the sides of the Switch can be unclipped and used as individual joypads.

The Wii U GamePad's 854 x 480 resolution also pales in comparison to the Switch's display, which sports 1,280 x 720 pixels.


Nintendo is keeping mum on its processor, and won't say anything about the CPU and GPU inside the Switch except that it will come equipped with its own customized Nvidia Tegra processor. The Wii U, on the other hand, is running on a 1.24GHz tri-core IBM CPU and 550MHz Radeon GPU.

Although it can be hard to pin down the difference between the two processors at the moment, it appears that the Switch will definitely have the more powerful chipset. The Switch will also have 4 GB of RAM, which is bigger than the Wii U's 2 GB.

In terms of storage, the Switch will also have the same 32 GB of internal space, which is a letdown, although it can be expanded to 128 GB through a microSD card. The Switch will be launched on March 3.

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