How to Use Voice Chat When Playing Your Nintendo Switch

Voice chat lets you play games with your friends when you are in different locations. It’s a great tool for connecting players from all over the world and enhancing gameplay by allowing you to coordinate organized attacks with your teammates.

Voice chat is a built-in feature on almost every current-gen console, but the Nintendo Switch definitely lags behind in this regard. Rather than being available natively on the system, the Nintendo Switch offers a more cumbersome way to chat with your in-game friends through the Nintendo Switch Online app.

Do all Nintendo Switch games support voice chat?

Nintendo’s voice chat feature is generally considered sub-par compared to consoles like the PS5 or Xbox Series X/S. Not only do you have to download an entirely separate app to access it and purchase a Nintendo Switch Online membership, but there are only a handful of games that are actually compatible with voice chat.

As of August 2022, there are 14 exclusive third-party titles compatible with the Nintendo Switch Online voice chat feature on the Nintendo Switch. In addition to these 14 titles, voice chat is also available for the Retro NES catalogue, which you get access to with your Nintendo Switch Online membership.

While this list of games might seem a little lackluster to some, there are some great titles available on this list. You can check which games are compatible with Nintendo Switch online voice chat on the Nintendo Support website.

Is there an integrated voice chat option for the Nintendo Switch?

The concept of voice chat being prevalent only on the Nintendo Switch Online app is confusing to some. This is mainly because the Nintendo Switch has already been proven to be capable of running voice chat natively on the system.

There are a few titles like Blizzard’s Overwatch and Epic Games’ Fortnite that bypass the Nintendo Switch Online app and offer built-in voice chat for their games. All you need to enable voice chat for these games is to plug your headset into the Nintendo Switch’s 3.5mm headphone jack and start playing with your friends.

How to use voice chat on Nintendo Switch with the Nintendo Switch Online app

To use voice chat on the Nintendo Switch Online app, you must first download and install the app. You’ll also need a valid Nintendo Switch Online membership, as well as a compatible game and a headset with either Bluetooth or a 3.5mm headphone jack.

Once you have all of the above, you can chat with your friends on your Nintendo Switch in compatible games. Here’s how:

  1. Launch the Nintendo Switch Online app and log into your account. If you haven’t already created an account, you can do so on the Nintendo Account sign-up page.
  2. Connect your headset via Bluetooth or by plugging it into the headphone jack on your smart device.
  3. On the home page you will see a section labeled Game Specific Services. These titles come with their own separate setup instructions. So if you want to play any of these exclusive titles with voice chat, press the appropriate icon and follow the unique instructions.
  4. All other titles can be accessed through the section labeled below voice chat. Launch the compatible track you want to play.
  5. The game will be displayed in the voice chat box. Press beginning to create a lobby that your friends can join at any time.

If you want to set up your Nintendo Switch Online app to send you a notification when a lobby is available, you can do so in the settings.

  1. From the home screen, press your user icon in the top right corner to open Settings.
  2. click notifications.
  3. Press Change settings.
  4. Press notifications in your app settings and turn that on allow notifications button on.
  5. Go back to the Nintendo Switch Online app settings and press voice chat.
  6. Turn the Start notification button to the on position.

You can also personalize your notifications by changing the vibrate or sound alerts if you like.

Using voice chat with third party apps

There are a few bugs when using the Nintendo Switch Online app for voice chat. The service is region locked and currently unavailable in several parts of Asia and South America. This can be problematic as many games have a global fanbase, so you may not be able to coordinate with your entire party through the Nintendo Switch Online app.

If you’re playing your Nintendo Switch on a PC and have an audio mixer, you won’t be able to get the full voice chat experience either. Because your headset needs to be connected to your phone, you can’t use a pair of headphones to hear your game and voice chat at the same time.

Because of this, you might be tempted to avoid the problems by using a third-party app like Discord or Mumble to play Nintendo Switch games with voice chat. While Discord is the most popular option for gamers, there are several other great Discord alternatives that you can try for yourself.

For privacy reasons, some players may prefer to use a voice changer when using voice chat features. The Nintendo Switch Online app does not offer this option natively. But you can check out these great free voice changers if you want to keep your identity secret when playing online voice chat games.

Try Nintendo Switch Online Voice Chat for yourself

A good and reliable voice chat feature is a great way to connect with your friends virtually and improve the outcome of your gaming experience. While voice chat on the Nintendo Switch isn’t perfect, it has come a long way in the last few years and can be a useful tool if you take advantage of it.

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