A recent unofficial port of an Android system is now available for the Nintendo Switch. Developers Billy Laws and Max Keller have been working on the project for about four months and are close to releasing an official port in the near future.
As the name implies, the port allows a user to take the Switch and use it like an Android tablet, along with all the software available on this operating system. PUBG for example seems to run quite smoothly, which should be no surprise considering the power of the Switch compared to what most Android devices usually need in their tablets. While the Joycons are not yet functioning for the port, the developers say that this will be possible later.
This also means that one can access their Netflix account, something that has been noticeably absent on the Switch to date. Add in the docking feature of the Switch and suddenly you can watch on a bigger screen, and even add a keyboard and mouse through the USB ports in the dock.
For now, the port only works on Nintendo Switch consoles that are categorized as “exploitable” meaning they were purchased before July 2018 and can be "exploited" through a microSD card. So, what does all this mean for the future of similar ports to the Switch?
Unsurprisingly, companies are rarely thrilled to hear about this manner of modification to its hardware. Control over aspects of a product is necessary to both protect the brand and consumers who may do harm to their devices. This means that Nintendo is not likely to approve the project or allow for it to run on newer consoles.
Still, the Android port is a glimpse into what the future of gaming could be. Imagine the portability and quality of Nintendo games and products combined with the versatility to then switch over to an Android device.
Mobile phones like the Samsung Galaxy 9 and similar variants offer consumer products that blur these lines almost seamlessly. One can use their phone on the go, and then arrive home or at the office and plug into devices like the DeX Pad, which effectively turn your phone into a computer station, complete with the ability to stream movies and work using the Google suite of applications.
While we may look at the Android port for the Nintendo Switch and consider it a neat accomplishment, it truly may be the future of gaming as hardware improves!