Nintendo Switch is not compatible with 3DS cartridges

Nintendo Switch is not compatible with 3DS cartridges


Yesterday (October 20th 2016) Nintendo revealed their newest hardware the NINTENDO SWITCH. You can read the press release for that here .  


Nintendo released a promotional video that showed the hardware using a cartridge/ SD card format for its game media .  You can watch that promotional SWITCH video by clicking here or view it below :


This picture collage (which I edited and cropped ) above was provided by Nintendo on its website: 

and you can clearly see that this new hardware uses a SD card / cartridge format of some kind. Since the Nintendo 3DS and DS also use a cartridge format many people wondered if the Nintendo SWITCH could play Nintendo 3DS game cartridges . Obviously since the Nintendo SWITCH doesn't have an optical disk drive Wii U and Wii games are not compatible with this new hardware . Recently Famitsu (A popular Japanese publication) confirmed that the Nintendo SWITCH is not directly backwards compatible with the Nintendo 3DS game cartridges . It can be assumed that Nintendo DS game cartridges are also not compatible with the SWITCH hardware since it uses similar technology to the Nintendo 3DS . 


Nintendo has a long standing tradition of supporting previous portable hardware in new hardware iterations . The Nintendo 3DS supports DS games , the Nintendo DS supports Game Boy Advance games, and finally the Gameboy Advance supports Gameboy Color and original Gameboy games . It looks like this tradition will end with the Nintendo SWITCH. 


Currently it is unknown if the Nintendo SWITCH has touch screen technology. The Nintendo 3DS and DS use touch screen technology for its hardware, so it would be difficult if not impossible to play many 3DS or DS games without a touchscreen of some fashion. If the Nintendo SWITCH does have touch screen technology , what kind is it ? The 3DS and DS use resistive touch screen technology and modern mobile phones and tablets use capacitive technology. If the SWITCH uses capacitive touch screen that might make it difficult (but not impossible) to play 3DS and DS games that use the older resistive touch screen technology . To learn more about touch screen technology please click here .  


It was not clear from that video if the Nintendo SWITCH can play video games in stereoscopic 3D. I assume that the Nintendo SWITCH won't have stereoscopic 3D visuals since at no time during the video was stereoscopic 3D mentioned or alluded to . Now it can be possible for the Nintendo SWITCH to play digitally downloaded Nintendo 3DS video games that users have purchased via the eshop , but we don't have any information on that either. We currently have no information on the operating system or software that the Nintendo SWITCH is compatible with at this time. Stay tuned to to get up to date information and analysis on the Nintendo 3DS , Nintendo SWITCH, and more 3D news  . 


Source: Famitsu (Article is written in Japanese)