If Fortnite gave you hope that the Nintendo Switch would allow voice chat via the headphone jack like any other device, think again. Nintendo of America boss Reggie Fils-Aimé has doubled down on the phone app.
Reggie, while speaking to Ars Technica, stated, “What we see is a situation where we know that Nintendo Switch is being played in the open, at a park, on a metro bus. We believe the easiest way for you to connect and have a peer-to-peer experience with voice chat is with your mobile phone. It’s always there, it’s always with you.”
This seems like a strange claim, as if you are playing the Switch, isn’t that with you already? Adding a phone to the mix seems like an added — and frankly unnecessary — step on behalf of Nintendo. Instead of requiring one device, we require two, which calls Reggie’s claim into question. With Fortnite allowing voice chat via the headphone jack as well, this just seems like a bizarre argument to double down on.
Reggie continues, “Nintendo’s approach is to do things differently. We have a much different suite of experiences than our competitors offer, and we do that in a different way. This creates a sort of yin and yang for our consumers. They’re excited about cloud saves and legacy content but wish we might deliver voice chat a different way, for example.”
I’m not sure I heard anyone clambering for a different way to do voice chat, but okay! Considering Discord is a thing, allowing voice chat via the phone in a much more efficient way than the Nintendo app, it seems Nintendo have missed the mark even in this regard. Let’s hope that one day they decide to get with the times and allow a typical voice chat setup, much like consoles have for the past five or so years.