When the Nintendo Switch went on sale in March 2017, it did mysteriously not have Bluetooth audio support. Nor was it added despite years of complaining by owners. Now, thanks to Nintendo’s latest update, it finally does.
The addition comes as part of the latest Switch update, and makes it possible to use Bluetooth devices for audio output. Nintendo does point out that there might be some latency, but the feature is long overdue. Via the company’s support page, here’s how to pair a new audio device:
1. Make sure that no more than two wireless controllers are currently connected to your Nintendo Switch system. If a controller needs to be disconnected, hold the SYNC Button on the controller for at least one second.
- A pair of Joy-Con counts as two wireless controllers.
2. Turn on your Bluetooth audio device and set it to a searchable state or pairing mode.
- Follow the instructions for your specific Bluetooth audio device on how to enable it to be paired.
3. From the Nintendo Switch HOME menu, open System Settings.
4. Scroll down to Bluetooth Audio, then select Pair to search for any available
- Searching for pairable devices can take several seconds.
- If 10 devices have already been paired and saved to the system, you will need to remove at least one saved device before you can pair a new one.
5. Select your Bluetooth audio device’s name when it is found.
6. Once connected, any audio that is played will be output through your Bluetooth device. Be sure to adjust the system volume to a comfortable level.
- If desired, you can also lower the maximum headphone volume.
There are a couple things to note. First, it’s only possible to connect up to two wireless controllers to a Switch when using Bluetooth audio. Pairing additional controllers requires you to disconnect any Bluetooth audio devices. It’s also only possible to pair one Bluetooth audio device at a time; however, up to ten can be saved on a Switch.
What’s more, it’s not possible to use Bluetooth and local communication at the same time. So, if you are starting a local wireless multiplayer game, then the Bluetooth audio will disconnect. Finally, it’s also not possible to use Bluetooth microphones.
Don’t you wonder why this feature wasn’t introduced sooner? I mean, it wasn’t a hardware limitation holding this feature back...