2 Ways to Find Your Nintendo Switch [Track & Deactivate]
The Nintendo Switch continues to deliver a variety of fun and immersive gaming experiences — be it dancing with a canine companion in The Legend of Zelda or exploring nostalgic 3D worlds in Super Mario Odyssey. Even more, its portability allows us to bring our favorite games with us wherever we go.
But this ease of mobility also makes the Nintendo Switch easy to lose. So… how to find my Nintendo Switch when I lose it?
In this article, you learn how to find your Nintendo Switch with an app, track a stolen one, and unlink your credit card details from it. You will also learn to unregister your Nintendo Switch remotely to minimize your losses if you ever lose it.
How Can I Find My Nintendo Switch?
One of the first places you might find yourself looking for a portable console is your home.
The sad part is that the device lacks a "Find My Device" tag like Apple products or an inbuilt tracking system like Android devices and newer consoles.
There are 2 possible ways for you to find your Nintendo Switch if you lose it at your house:
1. Find My Nintendo Switch [Using Third-Party Trackers]
There are certain apps and Bluetooth devices that can track your Nintendo Switch. And of course, they have to be connected to your Switch.
These trackers are limited by distance or network range, however, you can detect when your portable console is out of reach.
A lot of these trackers can be purchased on online stores like Amazon and they are often priced at $20 or less.
Each one has its different modes of operation. Read the reviews and choose one that fits your needs. Tile Mate is a great example of these devices and a good place to start your search.
2. Find My Nintendo Switch [Using the Device's Serial Number]
Every Nintendo Switch has a unique serial number and it is quite useful to locate it with help from Nintendo Customer Support.
You can find your console's Serial Number next to the USB-C port at the bottom of the device, in the System Settings Menu of the device, or at the bottom of its packaging box.
To locate your Nintendo Switch with its serial number, do the following:
- Step 1. Call the Nintendo Customer Support telephone line
- Step 2. Give them your Serial Number. They will give information on when and where the device connected to the internet last.
- Step 3. Report to the Police and provide the information you got from Nintendo.
This method is quite extreme if you want to find your Nintendo Switch in-house. However, it will come in handy if you misplace it in public or when it gets stolen.
Can You Track a Stolen Nintendo Switch?
Yes. With the serial number of your Nintendo Switch, you can work with Nintendo's customer service to track your device's location. However, tracking your Nintendo Switch by yourself might be a bit of a hassle. Especially if you haven't connected the device to a tracking app or device prior to the time you misplaced it.
More so, if your Nintendo Switch was connected to a Wi-Fi network before it was stolen, you may be able to locate it using the network's router's logs.
But in any case, be sure to contact the local authorities and report the theft as soon as possible. In addition to increasing your chances of recovering your device, this will provide a record that can be used as proof of loss.
How to Unlink Your Credit Card From a Lost/Stolen Switch?
According to Nintendo Support), the following steps will help you unlink your credit card from a lost or stolen Nintendo Switch.
Step 1: Access accounts.nintendo.com on a Smartphone or Computer
Step 2: Sign-in With Your Nintendo Account
Step 3: Select "Shop Menu"
Step 4: Click the "Delete/Erase" Button Next to the Credit Card Details
Step 5: Click "Delete/Erase" on the Popup Message to Confirm.
How Do I Unregister a Nintendo Account Remotely?
If you lose your Nintendo Switch or it got stolen, the first thing to do is to unregister your Nintendo account on the device.
This prevents unwanted persons from using your account to purchase new games using your switch device.
You can do that remotely from any internet-accessible device via the following steps.
Step 1: Enter the Nintendo Account Website.
Step 2: Sign-in to the Nintendo Account You Wish to Deactivate.
Step 3: Select "Shop Menu"
Step 4: Scroll Down & Select "Deregister Primary Console"
Step 5: Re-enter Your Password & Click "Ok"
Step 6: Delete Your Console Record
How to Deactivate a Nintendo Account's Primary Nintendo Switch
Deactivating a Nintendo account's primary Nintendo Switch is the same thing as unlinking your account from the device.
You can do this remotely or on the console itself. We described how you can do this remotely in the section above.
Let's discuss how to do this on your Nintendo Switch itself.
Step 1: Launch Your Console
Step 2: Select "Nintendo EShop" on the Home Menu
Step 3: Select the Account You Want to Deactivate
Step 4: Tap the "Account Picture" at the Right Top Corner
Step 5: Scroll Down to "Primary Console" & Select "Deregister"
Step 6: Confirm by Clicking "Deregister"
You might be required to provide a password. Provide the password to complete the process.
Can a Stolen Nintendo Switch Be Deactivated?
Yes. You can deactivate your Nintendo account on the Switch and this prevents access by unwanted agents. Nintendo allows you to do this remotely via accounts.nintendo.com. However, you can only do this once a year or as frequently as you deem fit.
Unregistering or deregistering your Nintendo Account is the same thing as deactivating a Nintendo Switch.
The device would be unusable until a new account is signed in on the device.
Is There a "Find My Nintendo Switch" App?
No, there isn't an app called "Find My Nintendo Switch" on the App Store or Google Play store. What you might see instead is the Nintendo Switch Online. This is the official app by Nintendo for Switch devices. It helps you track game playtimes and can be a bit useful to actually find your Nintendo Switch if you misplace it.
Remember that, although there isn’t a "Find my Nintendo Switch" app, you can always use certain Bluetooth devices and their apps to track your Nintendo Switch.
These tracker devices must be connected to your Switch and they are limited by distance or network range.
Which Data Nintendo Switch Online App Track/Monitor?
The Nintendo Switch App collects and syncs the following forms of personal data:
- Device Information
- Playtime (Time Spent Playing Games)
- Purchases Purchased Items and Games
- Media and content
The data collected are stored in the cloud and are updated every time you use the device. Though the app is primarily for tracking game playtimes, you can use it to track your Nintendo Switch if you misplace it.
The Nintendo Switch Online is the companion app made by Nintendo to sync your data across the other devices (like Wii U and 3DS consoles) you might have. You can find it on the App Store and Play Store.
Once you log in with your account details on the app, it starts synchronizing your data.
Take Precautions Before Losing Your Nintendo Switch
An understanding of how to find your Nintendo switch is crucial for every owner of the device. The console does not come with an inbuilt GPS tracker like other consoles so it is crucial that you take the necessary precautions against losing it or theft.
Ensure you verify the serial number of your Nintendo switch if you purchased it from a third-party vendor.
Getting third-party tracking devices or apps will also help you find your Nintendo Switch if you misplace it.
To reiterate, know your Switch's serial number and register it with Nintendo, it’s your best chance at recovering the console if it gets stolen.
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