Yesterday, we published our review of the Switch OLED, the latest hardware iteration of Nintendo’s incredibly popular hybrid gaming platform. Boasting a gorgeous 7-inch OLED panel and a revised dock, it’s an upgrade that improves on the original design in many meaningful ways – apart from one.
As we noted in the review, the game card slot has been changed on the OLED model. The small notch present on the 2017 design and the Switch Lite – which allowed your fingertip to grip the edge of the plastic flap which covers the slot – has been removed, and in its place, we have a very, very thin gap that runs the length of the flap’s edge.
The key problem here is that unless you have exceptionally long nails, getting the flap open is frustratingly hard. This might sound like a genuine ‘first world problem’ – and don’t get me wrong, it totally is – but the first time I tried to open the slot, I honestly thought the unit was defective.
When there’s no game card in the slot, the flap flexes slightly under the pressure of your finger, which makes it even harder to get a purchase on it and open it. It’s slightly easier once a game card is in the slot and the door then pushes against that rather than flexing, but even so, it’s still much, much harder to open than it is on the original model or the Switch Lite.
Why did Nintendo make this design change? Perhaps it wanted to make it harder to accidentally open the game card slot during use. Or maybe someone in Nintendo’s hardware design department really hates notches. Whatever the reason, it’s practically the only thing I don’t like about the Switch OLED – so in that respect, I should probably be happy that the rest of the console is so well executed.