YouTube is now available on the Nintendo Switch.
The gaming giant’s latest handheld console is something of innovative marvel, as it allows gamers to jump from living room TV to portable playing just by sliding it in and out of a dock. But in the modern age, consoles have grown to something beyond pure gaming, as many use their devices to stream media to their TVs, whether that’s Netflix or BBC iPlayer. Netflix, for example, is available on PS3, PS4, Wii, Wii U, Xbox 360 and Xbox One consoles, which means that the Switch is the first from the current generation of consoles not to support it.
Nintendo has previously suggested that Netflix or Amazon Prime Video will not be available on the Switch any time soon, but that possibility just got one step closer to reality, as YouTube has now been added to the machine’s line-up of apps.
The free app allows Switch users to “enjoy entertainment like music videos and shows, plus gaming livestreams, how-tos and much more”, says Nintendo, acknowledging how big a part of YouTube culture gaming has now become.
You can use the app in both dock and handheld modes, with the same playlists, preferences and recommendations available by logging into the app through your Google account. YouTube’s arrival on the console follows Hulu’s addition last year, although that’s only available in the USA.
Don’t expect Netflix on your Nintendo Switch anytime soon
23rd January 2017
Don’t expect Netflix your Nintendo Switch anytime soon, judging by recent comments made by the video game giant.
Nintendo’s new console, which gets its name from the innovative way it can jump between living room TV screens and a portable, handheld screen, could be the must-have gaming device of the year, if the company manages to replicate the Wii’s success of many years ago. However, while many use consoles as a way to stream media to their televisions, Nintendo has confirmed that Netflix will not be available on the device when it launches in March – and neither will any any other VOD services, such as Amazon Prime Video.
“All of our efforts have gone toward making the Nintendo Switch system an amazing dedicated video game platform,” a spokesperson for Nintendo told Kotaku, when questioned about the console. They added that it is “being considered for a future update”, although there is no guarantee that support for Netflix would ever be introduced.
The move will as good and bad news to fans. The streaming service is currently available on PS3, PS4, Wii, Wii U, Xbox 360 and Xbox One consoles, which means that the Switch would be the first from the current generations of consoles not to support Netflix – a frustration for those looking for an all-in-one media hub. On the other hand, Nintendo purists may take some reassurance from the company’s singular focus on gaming technology, rather than broader mainstream appeal.
In the age of Twitch and YouTube live-streams, though, Nintendo did confirm that users will be able use a Share button on the Switch – “the Capture Button is located on the Joy-Con (L) controller and the Nintendo Switch Pro Controller” – and will allow users to take screenshots from games and share them (with customisable text) to social media.
“We are planning to add the ability to record video in the future,” added the spokesperson.