As an avid user of the Nintendo Switch, one of its few sore points has been the lack of improved online functionality. Playing games is one thing, but being able to chat with your teammates adds a lot to the experience. Today, Nintendo has finally released its Nintendo Switch Online companion app for Android devices.

The Nintendo Switch Online app ties your smartphone to your Switch console to give you a second screen that handles voice chat, game invites, and various features based on the game you’re playing. Splatoon 2, for example, actually uses its own ranking information through SplatNet2, which also gives players important information for their battles.

The Nintendo Switch Online app is designed to help enhance your online gameplay experience on Nintendo Switch™. With this app, you can check game-specific services (e.g., SplatNet 2 for Splatoon 2), invite friends to play with you via social media, and use voice chat while gaming.

This app is, of course, free to download and available now on Google Play, but Nintendo’s online services are only free until 2018. Starting sometime next year, Nintendo will begin charging $20 per year for its online services. In the meantime, though, the Switch Online app will be useable in games like ARMS, MarioKart 8 Deluxe, and Splatoon 2, which releases on Friday.


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