10 Nintendo Switch Features You Should Be Using

Nintendo Switch with keyboard, Xbox One controller, and earbuds
Corbin Davenport / How-To Geek

The Nintendo Change is a unbelievable handheld console, and regardless that it’s not as feature-packed as a gaming PC (and even another consoles), there are a couple of useful options you may not learn about.

Join Some USB Gadgets

The Nintendo Change has a USB Sort-C port on the underside of the console, largely supposed for charging and connecting to the included TV dock. Nonetheless, the port additionally works with many USB Sort-C equipment, and even some USB Sort-A gadgets with the proper adapter. The dock has its personal full-size USB ports, however you don’t should dock the Change to attempt USB equipment.

You should utilize most USB Ethernet adapters with the Change, which might be useful in conditions the place a Wi-Fi connection is unreliable. Nintendo included an Ethernet port on the dock included with the OLED Switch, and you may get the identical expertise on different docks (or in handheld mode) over USB.

USB keyboards are additionally supported, which can be utilized for typing textual content as a substitute of the on-screen keyboard in lots of video games and functions. That’s particularly useful for video games that help textual content messaging with different gamers, like Animal Crossing: New Horizons, or trying to find video games within the eShop. Some video games even help keyboards for gameplay, although it’s often not documented properly — Bethesda’s Doom (1993) and Doom II for Change settle for keyboard enter, however that’s not talked about anyplace on the store page.

The port even works with many USB audio adapters and gadgets — I’ve used my SteelSeries Arctis 1 headset with my Change a couple of occasions, which could be a low-latency various to Bluetooth audio, and many other headsets are appropriate. Sadly, exterior drives, pc mice, and different varieties of gadgets are usually not supported, however the USB port does unlock some useful performance.

Change the Controller Buttons

Most PC video games can help you change which keys carry out a sure motion, and the Nintendo Change has the identical performance on a system-wide degree. Open the Settings in your Change, then navigate to Controllers and Sensors > Change Button Mapping.

The Button Mapping menu permits you to change what every button does — for instance, you possibly can swap the A and B buttons if you need. It really works with Pleasure-Cons and the Nintendo Change Professional Controller, in addition to any third-party gamepads that emulate the Professional Controller.

Better of all, it can save you your settings as Presets, after which swap between them as typically as you need. In the event you solely want customized controls for sure video games, it’s straightforward to change forwards and backwards between presets as wanted.

Browse the eShop from Your Browser

The Nintendo eShop is the place to obtain video games and functions in your Change, however it may be a gradual and irritating expertise on the Change, particularly when scrolling by way of lengthy pages. Fortunately, there’s another: use the eShop in an internet browser.

You may browse all digital video games for the Change by visiting nintendo.com/store/games in an internet browser. Identical to on the Change, you possibly can seek for titles, and use completely different filters to kind by style and pricing. You can even click on the guts button so as to add a sport to your Watch Record, which synchronizes with the Watch Record on the Change’s eShop. It’s a lot quicker and extra responsive than the eShop on the Change console.

Once you’re able to buy a sport (or simply obtain it, if it’s a free obtain), you’ll be requested to log in with the identical Nintendo Account in your Change. When you’re accomplished, the sport will begin downloading in your Change — similar to putting in an Android app or sport from the Play Retailer web site.

Alternatively, you should purchase digital video games at retail shops like Amazon and Target, which give a code you enter on the Change eShop (or from the ‘Redeem Code’ page on the net retailer). That’s often not any simpler or cheaper than utilizing the Nintendo eShop straight, however if in case you have a rewards program at a sure retailer that offers you money again for purchases, it is perhaps definitely worth the problem.

Maintain Down the Dwelling Button

The Dwelling button on the fitting Pleasure-Con takes you to the Change’s house display, however do you know which you can maintain down on it to open a fast entry panel? The panel has sliders for the display brightness and quantity, in addition to a toggle for Airplane Mode and a button to place the console to sleep.

Better of all, opening the house button panel doesn’t pause or stop your sport like urgent the house button does. You may shut it by urgent the B button, or by holding down the Dwelling button once more.

Join Bluetooth Headphones

The Nintendo Change has a 3.5 mm audio jack for connecting wired headphones, and as beforehand talked about, you possibly can join USB audio gadgets to the Sort-C port. Nintendo additionally added support for connecting Bluetooth headphones in September 2021, which you’ll arrange from the ‘Bluetooth Audio’ part within the Settings app.

Although the choice is useful, because it permits the Change to work with true wi-fi earbuds like Apple AirPods, it’s not good. There’s a small delay in sound in comparison with wired headphones or the Change’s personal audio system, and you may solely have two controllers related concurrently a Bluetooth system (as a substitute of the standard 4).

There are some adapters for the Switch that may enhance Bluetooth headphones, however it is best to give the built-in choice a attempt first — it is perhaps ok for you!

Watch Streaming Companies

The Nintendo Change is a gaming console before everything, however there are additionally a couple of streaming companies obtainable as free apps on the Change eShop. As of July 2022, you possibly can watch Hulu, YouTube, Twitch, Funimation, Crunchyroll, and Pokémon TV on the Change. There’s no software for Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, HBO Max, or some other streaming companies.

In the event you don’t have a pill close by, the 6.2-inch display on the common Nintendo Change isn’t the worst method to atone for The Orville or Assault on Titan. The OLED Change is a good higher choice, with its bigger 7-inch display and better high quality show.

Hulu on the OLED Nintendo Change Corbin Davenport / How-To Geek

The streaming apps on the Change can be an incredible various to streaming apps on low-end sensible TVs or streaming containers. For instance, Hulu on the Change is way more responsive than Hulu on my Samsung sensible TV. Relying on how previous your TV or streaming field is, your Change may even have fewer connectivity issues, for the reason that Change helps Wi-Fi 5.

Play On-line And not using a Subscription

Most video games for the Nintendo Change require a paid Switch Online subscription to play with mates over the web. The associated fee for a single subscriber is $3.99 per 30 days, or $19.99 per 12 months, and there’s a household plan for as much as eight people who prices $34.99/yr. That’s not horrible pricing, particularly contemplating you get cloud save backups and different options too, nevertheless it’s nonetheless one other subscription to maintain up with.

Kitten Squad is one sport that doesn’t want a Change On-line subscription Arcade Distillery / Nintendo

Fortunately, some video games use their very own servers for on-line play, and don’t require a Change On-line subscription to play with different individuals. FortniteApex Legends, Asphalt 9: Legends, and Paladins are a few of them — there are a couple of unofficial lists with different examples.

Unsurprisingly, Nintendo doesn’t provide a straightforward method to seek for on-line video games that don’t want the paid subscription, however you possibly can examine any sport for your self. The eShop pages for video games will embrace a message like “this software program consists of on-line options that require a Nintendo Change On-line membership” or “Nintendo Change On-line membership required for on-line play” close to the underside of the itemizing. In the event you don’t see a message like that, or it solely references Save Backups, you need to be good to go.

Use Third-Get together Chargers and Batteries

The Nintendo Change makes use of the identical USB Power Delivery (USB-PD) charging normal as most different gadgets with Sort-C ports. Meaning you should use almost any USB charger or portable battery to energy up your Change on the go, so long as the charger helps 18W of energy or extra. Every thing from a MacBook Professional charger to an Anker battery ought to do the trick.

USB Energy Supply may not be as thrilling now because it was a couple of years in the past, however I nonetheless love utilizing the identical energy adapter to cost my laptop computer, telephone, and Change after I journey. It’s additionally an enchancment from Nintendo’s earlier handheld consoles, which used proprietary charging connectors (which have been technically still USB).

Although you should use most USB chargers with the Change in handheld mode, you shouldn’t use a third-party wall adapter with TV dock. The Nintendo Change is way pickier with voltages when plugged into the dock, and utilizing an unofficial wall charger with the dock (or a third-party dock) can brick your console. If the wall adapter for the dock stops working, it is best to get the official replacement from Nintendo.

Examine for Pleasure-Con Drift

The commonest {hardware} failure on Nintendo Change consoles is Joy-Con drift — the place the management sticks on the included Pleasure-Con controllers don’t report the right course. In the event you’ve ever observed your in-game character shifting while you’re not touching the controller, one (or each) of your management sticks might need the issue.

It’s straightforward to examine in case your management sticks aren’t working correctly. Open the System Settings, then navigate to Controllers and Sensors > Calibrate Management Sticks. Then transfer one of many sticks, and also you’ll see a calibration display. If the plus image (+) is staying nonetheless within the heart of the circle, you don’t have anything to fret about.

Use Non-Change Controllers

Nintendo’s official controllers might be dear — a brand new pair of Joy-Cons usually prices $80, whereas a Pro Controller will set you again round $70. If you have already got controllers you take pleasure in utilizing, otherwise you don’t like Nintendo’s gamepads for some cause, there are different choices.

In addition to all of the third-party controllers designed for the Nintendo Change, just like the 8Bitdo Pro 2 and officially-licensed PowerA gamepads, you may also use an adapter to attach controllers supposed for different consoles. The 8Bitdo Adapter 2 can plug into the Change dock (or the console itself, utilizing the above-mentioned dongle), and works with authentic controllers for the Xbox One/Collection, PlayStation 3/4/5, and even the Wii. I exploit the adapter typically with an Xbox Core gamepad, which is extra comfy for me than Nintendo’s official Professional Controller.

8Bitdo Wireless USB Adapter 2

The 8Bitdo Wi-fi USB Adapter 2 is one choice for connecting controllers to the Nintendo Change that will in any other case be incompatible, like an Xbox wi-fi gamepad.

The one catch with adapters just like the 8Bitdo system is that you just don’t get all controller options. Tapping an Amiibo determine solely works with Nintendo’s personal controllers, and HD Rumble vibration works greatest with the official Pleasure-Cons. If you find yourself shopping for an adapter, bear in mind to allow ‘Professional Controller Wired Communication’ from the Controllers and Sensors Settings.

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