The Nintendo Switch Lite was designed as a console specifically for handheld gaming, but can you use it as an additional controller on a regular Switch, a PC, or a different console?
That's the question we'll be examining today. So let's dive a bit deeper into the Lite device, and find the answer to the million-dollar question. We know that the Switch Joy-Con controllers can be used as a controller on a PC, so can we do something similar with the portable device?
Nintendo Switch Lite
On the surface, the Nintendo Switch Lite has the technology to enable it to operate as a controller. It has Bluetooth 4.1 and is also NFC enabled. So there is potential for it to at least communicate with other devices within range of it. But the reality is a little less straightforward.
Check Price: Nintendo Switch Lite at Amazon
While Bluetooth is inbuilt on the Lite, that doesn't automatically mean that it supports this type of functionality. We already know that the original Switch doesn't even offer Bluetooth audio support for wireless headphones. Is it realistic to expect the cheaper version to have additional functionality?
Can you use the Switch Lite as a Switch controller?
Well...sort of. A bit.
The Lite does support local multiplayer. What this means is that any game that is handheld compatible (not all Switch games are available for the Lite model) can be played on the Lite, even if friends or family are using a docked Switch. However, the Lite version cannot be played in tabletop mode or TV mode.
So while you might be playing the same game, you would still have to use the screen on your Switch Lite. You would not be able to turn on a docked Switch and use the Lite as a controller for the game you wish to play on the big screen.
READ MORE: Is the Nintendo Switch Lite splitscreen?
How about PCs and other consoles?
Given that Nintendo hasn't made the Lite compatible with their own hardware for use as a controller, it would be a real shock if they did enable that functionality for PCs and other consoles. So it shouldn't come as a surprise that the answer is no. At the time of writing, the Lite handheld cannot be used as a controller for PCs or other consoles.
Nintendo has built the Lite device to be an entirely self-contained gaming machine, with some connectivity for other Switch and Lite users. They have not supplied support for Bluetooth connectivity to other devices, which means that there really isn't any way to utilise them on other platforms. While you could conceivably plug one into the USB port on a PC or console, it isn't designed to communicate with them. The best outcome you can expect is that you might be able to charge it. But that's about it.
So there you have it. The Switch Lite is a fabulous handheld gaming system, and great for gaming on the go. But if you want to use it as a controller on another console, you're going to be disappointed.