Wireless audio has finally arrived on the Nintendo Switch, which has until now required gamers to connect via the headphone jack. Nintendo actually added Bluetooth functionality in an April 2021 firmware update, which was believed to be a setup for the long-rumored Switch Pro, but it was only turned on this week. If you’re ready to go wireless, here’s how to connect your Bluetooth headphones to the Nintendo Switch.
Unfortunately, Bluetooth audio on the Switch comes with some limitations, which the device will warn you about. Once the feature is turned on, only two wireless controllers can be paired to the console. You will have to turn Bluetooth audio off if you want to link additional controllers. You also can’t locate lost controllers or change grip/order in the Controllers menu while connected.
The Switch will only allow one Bluetooth audio device to be paired at a time, but you can have up to 10 devices saved to the console. Since Nintendo has a mobile app that handles all chat capabilities, Bluetooth audio will also not work with local wireless multiplayer, and Bluetooth microphones are not supported.
Pair Bluetooth Headphones
Once you update your Switch to version 13.0.0 or higher, Bluetooth audio will be unlocked on the device. Your first order of business should be to pair a set of headphones or earbuds. This can be done while the Switch is docked or in handheld mode. From the home screen, select the System Settings gear icon and scroll down and select Bluetooth Audio.
At this point, you can put your Bluetooth device in pairing mode. This will vary based on your particular device, but many true wireless earbuds simply require you to remove them from the case. Other headsets may have a pairing button you need to hold down.
With the headset in pairing mode, tap Pair Device on the Switch screen. The console will search for nearby devices, then display any devices it has found. If your headphones are listed, tap the entry and then OK to initiate the connection.
If your Switch cannot find your headphones or earbuds, try again by pressing the Y button on the controller. You may also need to put the headset in pairing mode again.
Turn Off Bluetooth Audio
From this point on, Bluetooth audio should automatically connect whenever you try to use your Bluetooth audio device near the Switch. However, you can turn off the feature and manage connected devices under System Settings > Bluetooth Audio.
Select the connected device and click Disconnect Device to unpair the headset. This will officially turn off Bluetooth Audio and allow you to use any disabled features, like controller pairing. Choose Remove Device to delete the entry from the console. Keep it mind that if you wish to add additional headsets, you must first disconnect from the current device.