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Dakhil

Rumour: Nintendo Switch Firmware 10.0.0 Datamine Suggests New Hardware Model ("nx-abcd")

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Posted (edited)

https://twitter.com/hexkyz/status/1250077697004322816

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Firmware 10.0.0 adds preliminary support for a new hardware model: "nx-abcd".

3 of the 5 new DRAM profiles are for this new hardware type and there's evidence of a secondary display of sorts being added exclusively on this model.

( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)

https://twitter.com/hexkyz/status/1250083543490760704

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Right, it's all still X1 (actually X1+, which is X1 with the new t214/t210b01 SoC). I'm not sure how much more power they can squeeze out of it. As it is 4K, for example, seems near impossible.

https://www.resetera.com/threads/rumor-nintendo-switch-firmware-10-0-0-adds-preliminary-support-for-a-new-hardware-model-nx-abcd.184806/page-3#post-31314987

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We've learned much more about the codenames since then, btw; much of that tweet has actually been found to be inaccurate (more in a sec). The fact that it's nx-abcd actually seems to indicate a new form factor (not hybrid or handheld). You would think TV-only, but that's already taken by nx-abcb, so I'm not sure what this is. The update is still being datamined, however.

Anyway, what we've learned since that tweet: there have been 5 hardware models supported by the OS; these are Icosa, Copper, Hoag, Iowa, and Calcio. Icosa, Hoag, and Iowa have been released; they're the launch model, the lite, and the updated model with improved battery life, respectively.

Copper was removed after the RCM hardware bug was found, but based on its implemented services it seemed to be a non-mobile device (it didn't implement battery or charging services, and had HDMI services unique to it that are theoretically handled by the dock in the hybrid Switch).

Calcio is interesting. It only popped up in one of the 9.X updates, seemingly indicating it's in active development. It appears to essentially be Copper but on the new Mariko chip found in Hoag and Iowa and, curiously, lacks support for game cards, suggesting a digital-only device. If my speculation that a TV-only device would be positioned as a sort of super-economical option (even cheaper than the lite) is accurate, that would make some sense.

These 5 models fall into three form factors: nx-abca2, nx-abcb, and nx-abcc. Icosa and Iowa are nx-abca2, Copper and Calcio are nx-abcb, and Hoag is nx-abcc. You may also notice some consistency in the naming; abca2 devices start with 'I' (integrated?), nx-abcbs start with 'C' (console), and nx-abcc is 'H' (handheld). The previous thought that some of these terms referred to dev kits is inaccurate; the dev kits use the same hardware configs and form factors as the retail units.

Source here:  

SPOILER: 1:02:30 - 1:15:00

All of the above was known before 10.0.0, including Calcio, and is not what this tweet is about. It's very interesting that 10.0.0 adds nx-abcd, as that theoretically wouldn't be a hybrid, home console, or handheld; all three are already taken. I'm not entirely sure yet whether the update also adds a hardware configuration implementing the form factor; if so, we can look at what OS services/drivers it supports to try to make an educated guess on what kind of device it is. A secondary screen is interesting; could it be VR?

I don't know how I feel about a TV only Nintendo Switch model (like with the PlayStation TV). However, I certainly believe that it's a possibility since Nintendo released a Nintendo Switch Lite, which can't be docked to the TV. 

I wonder if the secondary display mentioned in the Nintendo Switch firmware 10.0.0 datamine is suggesting that Nintendo's potentially planning to release a standalone VR device. I certainly think that's possible since Nintendo did release a bunch of VR patents.

Edited by Dakhil

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Everyone keeps saying this second display is VR, but I kinda hope it's like the Wii U in reverse. Wouldn't a proper VR attachment need 2 new displays, anyway?

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13 minutes ago, Erdrick The Hero said:

Everyone keeps saying this second display is VR, but I kinda hope it's like the Wii U in reverse. Wouldn't a proper VR attachment need 2 new displays, anyway?

Cheap VR headsets, like the PlayStation VR, and the Oculus Go, use only one display.

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