Is Discord on Nintendo Switch? We're not talking about arguments around which Zelda game is the best (Breath of the Wild, obviously). We're talking about Discord, the games-focussed VoIP chat app. Already available on Windows, macOS, Linux, iOS and Android, is this a service that is available for Nintendo Switch users to download as well? That's the question we'll be answering today.
Can You Download Discord on Switch?
While there have been a lot of gamers asking for Discord to be made available on Switch, at the moment this looks like a non-starter. Discord is not currently available to download on Nintendo Switch. A few years ago, the founder and CEO of Discord said he would love to bring Discord to Nintendo.
In the years since, little appears to have changed to make that happen. And there are probably a host of reasons for this. As we know, Nintendo tends to be very protective of their intellectual property. This means they tend to be slow at giving their development tools to third parties.
There are also questions about the impact of a chat service like Discord, and the family-friendly approach that Nintendo tries to take. We all know that there are some pretty toxic things in the gaming world. And a third-party app would not give Nintendo the same level of control that it normally has. Perhaps they feel that the risk of this to their brand identity is not worth it.
Are there any alternatives?
If you really want to be able to enjoy online chat on your Switch, then you do at least have some options. The first, and most Nintendo-approved, is voice chat via the Nintendo Switch Online App. You'll need an active Nintendo Switch Online membership to use it. It also restricts use to members who are 13 and over. And not every game is compatible with the service. To use it:
- Download and install the Nintendo Switch Online app on a smart device.
- Start the app, and sign infusing your Nintendo account.
- Turn on your Switch console, and start the compatible software using the same Nintendo account.
- Enter the voice chat mode on the app.
- On your smart device, you'll see a prompt marked "start voice chat?". Select Start.
The Nintendo service is quite limited, so you may find the game you want to play doesn't actually offer the service. If you find yourself in this scenario, or just want to use something else, your options are slightly restricted.
Your most likely alternative is to simply use a service such as Discord, and run it through a separate device, while using your Switch. It's a little bit unwieldy, but will at least give you the option of chatting with friends, even on games that aren't supported by the Nintendo Voice Chat service.