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8 Things You Didn’t Know Your Nintendo Switch Can Do

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8 Things You Didn’t Know Your Nintendo Switch Can Do

Easily Use Another Region’s eShop

Let’s face it, as a child, we all wished we could play all of those awesome looking exclusive games that never came to the west, including big hits such as Tingle’s Rosy Rupeeland… well, it was a hit in my mind. Thankfully, due to the Nintendo Switch being region-free, not only can you play cartridges from all over the world, you can even download titles from any region’s eShop.

There are exclusive demos, games, and content that sometimes doesn’t come stateside, so being able to sneak into the Japanese eShop is a godsend. All you have to do is create a new My Nintendo account but change the location of your home country. Once you’re all registered up, the other eShops will be available to you with no problem at all.

And if you’re really thrifty, keep an eye out on the sales page on the eShop, because sometimes a game might be on sale for European players but not for people in the west. Get out there and check out what these other regions are putting up on their digital shops.

The Parental Controls App Is Actually Useful

Going into your profile section on the home page of the Nintendo Switch, you can see how many hours played of your most recent titles but only if you played for more than 5 or 10 hours, and even then, there’s no way to see exact play time because the Switch just rounds up the hours by increments of 5.

You would think that downloading the Parental Controls app on your smartphone device might be a waste of time if you don’t have an actual kid, but surprisingly, the app has loads of information regarding hours played. You can see which games you played the most, how many hours each day you played, and you can go backtrack through months and months of time.

You Can Connect a USB Keyboard

Filling passwords and typing in emails can be slightly annoying if you’re using the control sticks or touch screen on the Nintendo Switch, but if you happen to have a USB Keyboard, you can plug that baby right into your Switch, allowing you to type as fast as your fingers can allow you to.

There aren’t a ton of games on Switch that has you typing out full sentences or messages to other players, but for those that just hate slowly typing out words on the Switch, having the ability to plug in your trusty keyboard is really nice.

You Can Turn on Your Switch and Television With One Button

Isn’t it super annoying to have to turn on your television and turn on your Switch in order to play a video game? I definitely hate that. One very cool feature that the Nintendo Switch possesses is the power to turn on your television by simply powering on the dock itself.

If you go into the Switch TV settings, you’ll see options for Screen Burn-in Reduction and then underneath that, you’ll see an option titled “Match TV Power State,” which when connected to your TV, allows your Switch to turn on your television whenever you power on the dock or exit sleep mode. It works the other way too so that when you put your Switch into sleep mode, your TV will turn itself off, matching the state of the console –pretty cool huh?

You Can Create a Passcode for Your Switch System

In the main settings available in the Switch system itself, there is currently no way to lock your device from intruders who dare to mess with your Breath of the Wild save file. But by using the Parental Controls app on your smartphone, you can set up a pin so only you have access to your console.

By setting up a passcode for your Nintendo Switch, only you can access your content and if for some reason, someone finds out your code, you can change it whenever you like using the application on your smartphone.

Even When Your Battery Dies, Your Game Progress Is Never Lost

You’re fighting that super hard boss that requires an abundance of time to defeat, with only two percent of your battery life left. Your palms are sweating, you’re worried that your progress will be lost with no charger in sight. The Switch gives you that message that your battery is about to die, but luckily, thanks to the magic of Nintendo, your progress will be fine if your battery manages to die completely.

The Nintendo Switch only powers off completely if you choose to do so from the home menu. If the battery dies your Switch will simply enter sleep mode, saving your current progress. Once you charge it back up, your game will be right where you left it.

Playing a Game From Internal Storage Makes Load Times a Bit Faster

Digital Foundry tested out playing The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild using four different methods to see which one would deliver the best loading times. They tried playing Zelda from its cartridge, from the Switch internal storage, from a 16 GB micro SD card, and from a 64 GB micro SD card.

When testing out loading screens using all four types of data, they found that running Breath of the Wild from the internal storage that the Switch provides, garnered the best results. And surprisingly, running the game from its cartridge gave the lowest results, taking over five seconds longer than the internal version of Zelda.

While we don’t know if this is the case with all Switch titles, it’s safe to assume that if you’re looking to shave a few seconds off of those pesky loading screens, playing downloaded games from the Switch itself is your best bet.

You Can Charge Your Phone Using the Switch

Yes, obviously since the Switch dock has a USB slot, you can pretty much charge anything using the dock itself if it’s plugged in, but did you know that you can charge devices using the Switch even in handheld mode? The Switch uses a Type-C charging port, so if you end up buying a Type-C charger for your iPhone or Android phone, you can simply plug it into your Switch and it will miraculously charge it up.

This will, of course, drain the battery from your Switch itself, but if you’re desperate and need a quick boost for your phone, it’s nice to have an option such as this one.

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