The Nintendo Switch Online mobile app has made it significantly easier to send friend requests to your friends.
Upgrading to the latest version of the Nintendo Switch Online app allows you to copy your long friend code as a URL. When you send this URL to a friend, they can tap it to open the app and instantly send a friend request. So there is no longer a need to manually copy and paste the friend code itself into the friend request section of the app (thanks, On the edge (opens in new tab)).
Alternatively, you can now save your Nintendo Switch friend code as a QR code. When shared with others, they can scan the QR code to send a friend request, essentially bypassing the need to interact with Nintendo’s complicated friend code system.
How to Update the Nintendo Switch Online App
The Nintendo Switch Online app can be downloaded for free from App Store on iOS (opens in new tab) and the Play Store on Android (opens in new tab). But if you already have the app downloaded, it might not update automatically.
To fix this, simply go to the Nintendo Switch Online app store page and tap ‘Update’. This will download the latest version of the app (Ver. 2.2.0), adding the new friend code features in the process.
Nintendo embraces modernity
Prior to this update, I always viewed the Nintendo Switch Online app as a wet squib. It allows you to browse your friends list and start voice chats (aggravating quality). Some services specific to some of the best Nintendo Switch games are also available for browsing. But that’s it.
Now, though, the app’s ability to share friend codes has improved dramatically. Before the update, your only option for sharing friend codes was to copy them as plain text. A shockingly incomplete implementation, then, but at least it’s now ready to come out of the oven thanks to these improvements.
Having a variety of ways to send friend requests is obviously nothing new on rival platforms. But Nintendo has always been hamstrung in this regard due to its frustrating commitment to the clunky friend code system we’ve had to deal with since the Wii days.
In the grand scheme of things, then, these friend request improvements are not a hug deal. But for Nintendo, it’s one step away from its archaic friend code-sharing trappings. Even if it’s more on tiptoe than a full stride.