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Nintendo adds Bluetooth audio output to Switch in latest firmware

Nintendo this morning pushed a new firmware live for the Nintendo Switch, adding a much-requested feature – Bluetooth audio support.

Firmware version 13.0.0 means you’ll be able to sync Bluetooth headphones and other speakers directly to the Switch using Bluetooth without a dongle or external device. It is only audio output at this stage, so any microphones in a headset won’t work.

However, there are some caveats: when you have a Bluetooth device connected, only two controllers can be used, and you can’t play wireless local multiplayer. The Nintendo Switch is now the only console on the market to have full, native Bluetooth audio support.

The update also adds a new option to update your dock, only docks without a LAN port will support this. You can also turn off the internet connection in sleep mode now as an option, and there are some other more minor changes as well.


Patch Notes

Ver. 13.0.0 (Released September 14, 2021)

Bluetooth¬ģ audio support was added.

  • Headphones, earbuds, speakers, and other audio devices that connect with Bluetooth can now be paired with Nintendo Switch family systems for audio output. 
    • Bluetooth microphones are not supported.
    • Up to two compatible wireless controllers can be connected to the system while using Bluetooth audio.
    • Bluetooth audio cannot be used while local wireless communication is active.
    • For more information, see How to Pair and Manage Bluetooth Audio Devices.

‚ÄúUpdate Dock‚ÄĚ was added under System in System Settings for Nintendo Switch and Nintendo Switch ‚Äď OLED Model systems, allowing for software updates to Nintendo Switch docks with a LAN port. 

  • Dock software updates are not available for Nintendo Switch docks without a LAN port. 
  • This feature was not added to Nintendo Switch Lite. 
  • For more information, see How to Update the Dock Firmware.

‚ÄúMaintain Internet Connection in Sleep Mode‚ÄĚ was added under Sleep Mode in System Settings. 

  • When this setting is enabled, systems with wired internet connections will maintain internet connection even while in sleep mode. This allows for software and add-on content to download to the system while the system is in sleep mode. 
    • The setting is enabled by default.
  • When this setting is disabled, the system will connect to the internet only periodically, which decreases power consumption. 

Note: Systems that are not updated to version 13.0.0 or later behave as if this setting is enabled.

The method to initiate ‚ÄúCalibrate Control Sticks‚ÄĚ in System Settings was changed. 

  • From System Settings, go to Controllers and Sensors, select Calibrate Control Sticks, then fully tilt the control stick in any one direction and keep it tilted for a few seconds to begin calibration. 

Users can now view whether their wireless internet connection is using the 2.4 GHz or 5 GHz frequency band under ‚ÄúConnection Status‚ÄĚ after selecting Internet in System Settings.

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Daniel Vuckovic
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