Switch owners can now easily load digital software purchases onto more than one console following a firmware update that was rolled out last night.
Switch firmware version 6.0.0, which is necessary to use the new Switch Online service, introduces the ability to associate “non-primary consoles” with your Nintendo Account (in addition to the “primary console” where you first used the account). Those non-primary consoles will be able to download any digital games purchased on the account, though Nintendo notes you “must have an active Internet connection” while playing those games on any secondary system.
Before you start planning to share your Nintendo Account game library with a few dozen friends, note that only one Switch at a time can access the digital library on that account. “When using downloadable software on a non-primary console, your game will pause if your Nintendo Account is used to access downloadable software on any other Nintendo Switch console,” Nintendo writes.
The update brings Nintendo in line with other major game platforms like Xbox Live, PlayStation Network, and Steam, which have long made it easy to download and play digital games on multiple hardware units. Previously, to download games to a secondary Switch, you had to go through the onerous process of deactivating the Nintendo Account on your original console and re-activating it on the new system.
The addition is another “better-late-than-never” addition to a Switch online account system that has been an incredibly bare bones affair since the system launched last year. Maybe now Nintendo can get to work on letting us send messages to Switch friends the way we’ve been doing on Xbox Live for well over a decade?
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