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Apparently, Qualcomm is working on a Nintendo Switch competitor

An unlikely competitor has entered the field.

nintendo switch on table
Image: Unsplash

With the huge popularity of the Nintendo Switch, it was only a matter of time before somebody copied its form factor. While we’ve seen some crowdfunded versions, Android Police has found out that Qualcomm is also working on a Switch copy, powered by its popular Snapdragon mobile chipsets.

We don’t have any images of the upcoming device as Android Police wasn’t allowed to share them, but they say that it’s immediately recognizable to anybody who has ever seen the Nintendo Switch. It’s a tablet in landscape orientation, with removable controllers on either side. It’s thicker than a smartphone, partly to pack in a 6,000 mAh battery, but also to mitigate the usual thermal issues with slimmer devices.

The detachable controllers are apparently being made by a “premium supplier in the controller space.” Hopefully, that means no Joy-Con-esque drift issues when the device hits the market. Like the Switch, Qualcomm’s device will have display-out for playing on a larger screen, an SD card slot for more storage, and full Android 12 with access to the Google Play Store. Qualcomm also hopes to have the Epic Games Store app working at launch, possibly heralding the app’s launch on Android at long last.

With an eventual launch date at the start of 2022, it’s likely to be running whatever the new flagship Snapdragon chip will be. Currently the top chip is the Snapdragon 888, which packs 5G, Bluetooth, GPS, accelerometers and dual-zone haptics. Will there be WiFi-only models for those who don’t want to pay for 5G? Maybe, although with a targeted price of $300, getting 5G connectivity at that price is a steal.

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