Twitch Plans to Ditch the Switch

Twitch Plans to Ditch the Switch

It’s not a glitch. Twitch said it is done with the Nintendo Switch. On Thursday, the streaming company said the app on Nintendo’s seven-year console was just too niche. Still, there’s a hitch. Nintendo might be preparing to pitch customers with an all-new console to scratch their itch—a sequel Switch—where perhaps Twitch could be fully feature-rich.

The Twitch app will officially leave the Nintendo eShop on Nov. 6, according to a new notice on the Twitch app’s help page. While new users won’t be able to download the app next week, those who already have the app will lose access to it starting Jan. 31 next year.

The thing is, the Twitch app on Switch was always pretty bad. While the app claimed users could search for creators and watch streams on the big screen with the console docked, you couldn’t access the chat natively via the app. You had to chat using a smartphone with a “companion experience,” which required users to open Twitch on another device and scan a QR code on the Switch Twitch app. Notably, users couldn’t subscribe to streamers directly from the Switch app, and you couldn’t stream games directly from the Switch like you can on every other major console.

In an email statement, a Twitch spokesperson told Gizmodo, “We recently made the difficult decision to remove the Twitch app from the Nintendo Switch. Nintendo remains a valued partner, and we appreciate all of the support the Switch community has provided to Twitch and our streamers.”

The streaming company declined to say whether the limitations of Twitch on Switch were hardware-related or had something to do with Nintendo’s policies.

This isn’t necessarily a big blow to the Nintendo Switch community, especially since the app was already so limited. Nintendo takes a very proprietary attitude to its users chatting with external apps. Discord remains unavailable on Switch, and Nintendo instead promotes its Online app that lets iOS and Android users talk directly with players on Twitch. Twitch is becoming much more like other social apps with Instagram-like Stories features, which likely wouldn’t have been supported on the Nintendo Switch.

There’s a chance Twitch could find redemption on any future Nintendo console. A few rumors are floating around that Nintendo is working on a Switch sequel that could see the light of day as soon as 2024. A few major publishers have already been pitched on the new Switch hardware, though there’s no word if other major app developers have also seen what Nintendo has cooking behind the scenes. Still, it would be a nice change of pace to see Twitch get full support in the next console go-around.