Skip to Content

Can You Use Your Switch Lite As A Controller?

Buying a controller can be an annoying added expense, especially for those gaming on a tight budget. So, when gamers are faced with a broken controller, they often wonder whether they’ve got anything else that can work as a substitute. But can you use your Switch Lite as a controller for another Nintendo Switch?

No, your Switch Lite won’t work as a controller for another Nintendo Switch. Since the Switch Lite’s Joy-Cons aren’t designed to be separated from the console, Nintendo didn’t give them any Bluetooth support. This means you can’t connect them to anything other than your Switch Lite.

Although your Switch Lite won’t work as a controller for another Switch, you might be wondering whether it’ll work as a controller for anything else — and what your alternatives are for controlling the Switch. Let’s go through the various options so that you can get back to playing your favorite games.

Understanding the Switch Lite

Xfinity modem

The Nintendo Switch Lite is a handheld gaming console developed and produced by Nintendo. It’s a compact and more affordable version of the original Nintendo Switch, which was released in 2017. The Nintendo Switch Lite (on Amazon) was first released in September 2019 and has since become a popular choice for gamers who prefer a more portable and compact gaming experience.

Unlike the original Nintendo Switch, the Switch Lite is a purely handheld device that cannot be docked to a TV. It features a smaller 5.5-inch touchscreen display, making it more pocket friendly and easier to carry around.

The console also has built-in controls, meaning that it doesn’t come with detachable Joy-Con controllers. This makes the Switch Lite more durable and suitable for younger players who may struggle with detachable controllers.

The Switch Lite offers all the same basic features as the original Nintendo Switch, including the ability to play Nintendo Switch games, access to the Nintendo eShop, and the ability to connect with other Switch consoles for multiplayer gaming.

However, due to its smaller size, it does have some limitations. For example, certain games that require the detachable Joy-Con controllers, such as 1-2-Switch and Super Mario Party, are not compatible with the Switch Lite.

Overall, the Nintendo Switch Lite is a great option for gamers who are looking for a more portable and affordable version of the original Nintendo Switch. Its compact size and built-in controls make it a perfect choice for on-the-go gaming, and its vast library of games ensures that there’s always something new to play.

Can You Use the Switch Lite as a Controller for Another Switch?

With Nintendo’s high priority for family-friendly local multiplayer games, Switch Lite owners often end up playing games with owners of the regular Switch. As a result, many Switch Lite owners wonder whether their device can be used as a controller for another Switch console.

Unfortunately, the answer is no. The Switch Lite doesn’t have detachable Joy-Con controllers like the original Switch, so it cannot be used as a separate controller for another Switch console. This means that if you want to play multiplayer games with others, you’ll need to have additional controllers.

It’s also worth mentioning that it’s not even possible to use a modded Switch Lite as a controller for a regular Switch. This is due to the fact that because the Switch Lite’s Joy-Cons aren’t designed to be able to detach from the console, they have no bluetooth connectivity built in.

However, not all hope is lost. There are still several ways that you can use your Switch Lite to play games with others. For example, if you have a friend with a Switch console, you can still play together using local wireless or online multiplayer modes.

Can You Use a Switch Lite as a Controller on a PC?

Unfortunately, it’s also not possible to use a Switch Lite as a controller for your PC. While you can hypothetically plug your Switch Lite into your PC using a USB-C cable, there’s no software built into the Switch Lite that would allow the PC to recognize the device at all.

It’s also not possible to connect your Switch Lite’s Joy-Cons to your PC wirelessly. This is once again due to the fact that the Switch Lite’s Joy-Cons aren’t designed to be able to detach from the handheld, so they’re not built with Bluetooth connectivity.

It’s worth mentioning that while it’s not usually possible for a PC to recognize a Nintendo Switch when it’s plugged into the PC, there are certain programs that you can install to establish a connection. These programs are usually how people hack their Switches to mod their games. However, these same programs aren’t currently compatible with the Switch Lite.

When the Switch was originally released, there was a flaw in its design that allowed you to mess with its files if you put it into recovery mode. Unfortunately, Nintendo has since fixed that design flaw, and it’s currently no longer possible to hack Switches released after a certain date.

The Switch Lite itself was released after Nintendo fixed that design flaw. This means that currently, no third party program can allow you to use your Switch Lite as a controller for your PC.

Can You Use Your Switch Lite as a Controller for a Playstation or Xbox?

Nintendo Switch Lite

If you’ve been reading the article up to this point, you probably know the answer to this question. Unfortunately, it’s not possible to use your Switch lite as a controller for Playstation or an Xbox. This goes for all generations of both the Playstation and Xbox.

This is due to the fact that there’s no interaction programmed between the two consoles that would allow you to use the Switch Lite as a controller. So, while you can technically connect your Switch Lite to a Playstation or Xbox through a USB connection, nothing would happen. If anything, you might get a message on your screen that an unknown USB device was connected.

As we mentioned earlier, there’s no Bluetooth connectivity built into the Switch Lite’s Joy-Con controllers. This means that even if you were to somehow hack your Switch to remove the Nintendo operating system, you still wouldn’t be able to connect your Switch Lite’s Joy-Cons to another console.

Which Controller Alternatives Are Available?

The answer to this question will depend on what you’re trying to use the controller for. For example, if you want a controller for another Switch, buying a pair of Joy-Cons is a great choice, but if you want a controller for a PC, those Joy-Cons won’t be able to do much.  

Let’s go through two of the situations we covered above and which controllers you should get for each.

Controllers for Another Switch

When people imagine a Nintendo Switch controller, they often imagine the controller that comes with the system itself: the Joy-Cons. As a Switch owner, you likely want to own at least one pair of Joy-Cons as there are certain games that require Joy-Cons specifically (such as Super Mario Party).

However, official Nintendo brand Joy-Cons are often too expensive for many buyers. For example, official Nintendo Joy-Cons (on Amazon) are typically priced around $80.

On the bright side, while you may think this is your only option, there actually are other brands that make cheaper Joy-Con controllers. For example, here’s a pair of Joy-Cons by ZHCWM (on Amazon) for around $35.

It’s worth mentioning that the Joy-Cons aren’t the only controller available for the Nintendo Switch. Nintendo also offers a more traditional looking controller known as the Pro Controller for the Nintendo Switch.

Just like the Joy-Cons, Nintendo’s Pro Controller (on Amazon) may be more than most want to spend, at around $70. However, like the Joy-Cons, the Pro Controller has cheaper alternatives as long as you’re willing to stray from the Nintendo branding.

Here is a Gamekaws Pro Controller (on Amazon) for just over $30 that will work fine with the Switch.

Controllers for a PC

By far the best controller for PC gaming is the Xbox One controller. Since Microsoft (the company responsible for the Xbox) is also responsible for Windows, all Windows 8, 10, and 11 computers have built in Xbox controller support.

Luckily, the Xbox controller also has cheaper off-brand options. This usergaing wireless controller (on Amazon) is compatible with both the Xbox One and PC for just around $39. It should work perfectly for pretty much any game with controller support.