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Nintendo Refutes Switch Pro & OLED Rumors But Offers No Answers

Recent tweets from Nintendo seem aimed at shutting down rumors of a Switch Pro, as well as the notion that the Switch OLED Model will offer the company increased profit margins with each sale. These tweets from the NintendoCoLtd account were evidently directed toward investors, not consumers. The tweets appear to be a rebuttal of reports from Bloomberg and other sources on the estimated cost to manufacture the Switch OLED Model, and numerous industry rumors surrounding a possible 4K-capable Switch model. Perhaps most noteworthy, however, is the information that Nintendo does not provide. The response declares stories to be false, but provides no specifics or elaboration on those declarations.

The first part of the tweet denied a report of the estimated production cost of the Switch OLED Model, noting only that the report “is incorrect.” The report referenced appears to be from Bloomberg, which cited industry research from DSCC that notes the OLED screen and the added internal storage could increase production costs by about $8, and the new kickstand and LAN port on the dock could add “a few dollars more.”  This led some readers to believe that the new Switch model would generate roughly $40 more in profit margin per sale compared to the original Switch model.

Related: Nintendo Switch OLED & LCD Screen Differences Explained

Refuting the report in such broad strokes does little for the consumers and is of questionable value for the investors the tweet was aimed at as well. Simply noting that the claim is incorrect does nothing to clarify the issue. It is possible that the Switch OLED Model's production costs are higher than the DSCC estimates, or there may be other costs the Bloomberg article failed to take into account. It could also mean that Nintendo was referring to the profit percentage of each OLED model sale matching the Switch at its original launch. Without elaboration and clarification, the blanket statement only adds confusion to the issue.

The second part of the tweet states Nintendo has no Switch model plans beyond the OLED model, but again presents it in terms so broad as to lack any real value. The tweet confirms the Switch OLED Model’s planned October launch, and states they have “no plans for launching any other model at this time.” An obvious read would be that the rumors of a 4K Switch Pro are false, which could be a valuable message for the company. While some fans are disappointed with the Switch OLED carrying the same internal specs as prior Switch models, clarification that there is no 4K Switch on the way might reassure consumers of the longevity of current Switch hardware, and make the OLED model a more attractive purchase. The full tweet can be viewed here:

The actual wording of the tweet does not truly rebuke the notion of a 4K Switch either. The Switch OLED has been announced ahead of its October 2021 release. Unless the tweet itself contained an unceremonious announcement of a different Switch model, it is a given that there is no other models planned for launch “at this time.” If Nintendo truly wanted to quash the rumors about a Switch Pro, they could have noted there is no other Switch model in development or planned for launch within the next year or more. The overly broad wording of this message only restates what was inherently obvious.

Transparency would be the preferred route. If the Bloomberg cost reports are inaccurate, Nintendo could provide hard data on the actual costs and margins of the Switch OLED Model, as well as current production costs for the original and Switch Lite models. If there truly is no Switch Pro in development, or if it is not planned for release for several years, Nintendo could simply say that. Tweeting that reports and rumors are wrong, without elaborating on how and why they are incorrect, is the kind of opaque communication that offers nothing to investors or consumers, and if anything, is likely to cause more rumor mongering, not less. The Switch has been a success for Nintendo, but its fans and investors alike deserve clarity, not broad denouncements of research and rumors.

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