While I almost always use my Nintendo Switch in handheld mode — even when at home lounging on my couch — it seems that isn’t the case for every Switch owner.
According to a recent ArsTechnica interview with Doug Bowser, Nintendo’s senior vice president of sales and marketing, play time is split 50-50 between docked and undocked gaming when it comes to the Switch. In terms of the company’s data, undocked also includes tabletop mode and full handheld play, says Bowser, since Nintendo doesn’t monitor the specifics of how Switch owners are specifically gaming.
Usage rates also vary by game, says Bowser. For instance, titles like Just Dance are primarily played in docked mode, which makes sense given how the game is played. On the other hand, Mario Kart 8 Deluxe and the Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild are more balanced in terms of specific play style.
Back in October Nintendo stated that roughly 30 percent of early Switch owners primarily used their systems undocked, with “primarily” referring to 80 percent or more of the time, according to ArsTechnica. Further, less than 20 percent of Switch players had a “primary bias” towards using the Switch in docked mode. At the time, Nintendo also said that the remaining Switch owners were “playing in both modes.” All of this data was presented during an investor’s presentation document.
Nintendo likely gathers this data through online Nintendo accounts, which means the results would be at least somewhat skewed given those that game primarily offline are not included in the statistics.
For more on Bowser’s — yes that really is his name — interesting comments on the Switch’s usage, check out ArsTechnica’s