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How to connect the keyboard to the Switch

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How to connect the keyboard to the Switch: You are there to play quietly with yours Nintendo Switch brand new but there is something you find a little annoying: every time you find yourself moving in the general menu of the console, in the Nintendo eShop or in the games and you are asked to enter a password or would like to write a message, it appears promptly on-screen a virtual keyboard, which you find really inconvenient to use when the console is connected to the base (and, therefore, you cannot use its touch-screen). To type every single letter, in fact, you have to move with the analogue or the directional arrows of the pad and then press a key to confirm, in short: a real nuisance.

You are therefore wondering how to connect keyboard to Switch in order to make these phases more immediate and easier, right? You might also want to know if a mouse can be connected, what games and peripherals are compatible with, and if any of these devices can also be connected to the Switch Lite. Did I guess? Excellent, then: I inform you that you have just found the guide that’s right for you. I will answer all these questions of yours in the course of this tutorial of mine.

I’ll explain the simplest way to connect these peripherals to your console, so that, finally, playing and navigating the menus will be a real pleasure even with the console connected to the base. If that’s okay with you, you can start getting comfortable and take a few minutes to continue with the next few lines. I just have to wish you a good read and, above all, a good time!

Preliminary information

Have you recently purchased the Switch, are unfamiliar with the console and would like to know first what connection methods for peripherals are supported by the latter? Answering this question is very simple and does not require too many words. Switch, in fact, has only one entrance available on the body of the console USB Type-C (the one used for charging) and the headphone jack (in addition to the slots for cartridges and microSD) on the body of the console; on the base to be connected to the TV, on the other hand, there is a port HDMI and three doors USB 2.0: two on the side and one on the back.

To be able to connect a keyboard to your console, you can use the USB inputs of the Dock: in this case, however, you can only use them when the console is connected to the base. You can also connect a radio frequency receiver for wireless keyboards and wireless mice to the same USB ports, in order to use wireless peripherals.

Alternatively, if you’re wondering if you can connect a keyboard or mouse to the Switch even when the console is on portable mode, the answer to is affirmative. However, in this case, you will need an adapter USB OTG equipped with a USB-A input and a USB Type-C connector, to plug into the console. I’ll explain all the details to you better soon.

The same “trick” can also be used on Switch Lite, the portable-only model of Switch with only a USB-C port, audio jack, and slot for cartridges and microSD. I’ll tell you more about it in dedicated chapter of this guide.

Also, I inform you that Switch and Switch Lite support the technology Bluetooth 4.1 through which it is possible to connect the Joy-Con and up to a maximum of 10 audio devices, including Bluetooth speakers and wireless headphones. In this regard, I leave you to my guide on how to connect headphones to the Switch.

Note: I point out that, in any case, you can change the layout of the keyboard connected to Switch by going to the menu of Settings (the gear icon that you find in the main menu), by selecting the item System from the left sidebar and pressing on the item USB keyboard.

How to connect a keyboard to the Switch

Having said that, let me show you how to connect one keyboard (or even a mouse) to Switch. As you will soon see, these are really very simple and immediate operations that will allow you to take advantage of these devices on your console, with some limitations which I will talk to you about in due course.

How to connect wired keyboard to Switch

Keyboard switch cable

You are wondering how to connect keyboard to Switch and you are in possession of a keyboard with cable? I’ll explain immediately how to proceed, it’s really child’s play. Just take the USB connector placed at the end of the keyboard cable you want to connect and insert it into the rectangular shaped inputs (the same as the connector) placed on the Dock of the console, the latter can be either already on or off.

You should know that the Dock in which you can insert the Nintendo Switch, to use the latter as a fixed console, has three USB 2.0 inputs. You find two in the lower part of the left side of the Dock. The third is instead hidden by the door with the Nintendo logo placed on the back of the same Dock. The input is located between the HDMI port and the AC charger port of the power supply.

Once you have inserted the connector you will not need to carry out any further operations. Switch is in fact able to automatically recognize the peripheral connected in this way, try typing some text as soon as possible and judge for yourself! I must inform you, however, that the keyboard connected in this way cannot properly be used for gaming as you would on a PC.

The keyboard on the Switch, in fact, can only be used to enter text when you are asked, for example when you are on the eShop and want to type the name of a title to search for, when in a game you are asked to enter a name for a character or when you can chat. In short, in the same cases in which the on-screen keyboard normally appears (the latter, in fact, will continue to be displayed on the screen even with a keyboard connected via USB).

The good news is, however, in some apps, like YouTube and Nintendo eShop, you can navigate the menus using the directional arrows on the keyboard, confirm by pressing the key Enter and cancel or exit by pressing the key Esc. Convenient, right?

If you want to use a keyboard when the console is in portable mode, as I mentioned in the chapter of preliminary informationyou must use a USB OTG adapter with a standard USB input (USB-A) and a USB Type-C connector to plug into the console.


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To connect everything, just insert the USB connector located at the end of the cable of your keyboard into the corresponding input of the adapter, then you must connect the latter to the Switch by inserting the Type-C connector into the appropriate input located at the bottom center of the console body. A no-brainer, right?

I recommend: since there are many USB-C adapters on the market, before buying one, check that it is equipped with OTG technology support and that it works with Switch (just read the comments of users who have already purchased the product).

How to connect wireless keyboard to Switch

Wireless keyboard switch

As I mentioned earlier, you have the option of connecting one to the Switch as well wireless keyboard. In this case, for everything to work correctly, the keyboard that you can connect in this way must have a radio frequency wireless receiver: this, as a rule, is included in the same package as these devices (so we are talking about RF keyboards with USB receiver and not Bluetooth keyboards, eye).

Again, the connection is made possible by the USB ports of the Dock or console. In the first case, you just need to simply insert the USB connector of the wireless receiver to one of the three inputs on the Dock, the same ones I told you about in the previous chapter.

Once you have connected this way, if the receiver you are using has a button to activate the search for devices, just press it and then press the pairing button on your keyboard (usually located on the back of the keyboard). That’s it, seen how simple it is? Now you should be able to write anything you want easily on the Switch (net of the limitations I told you about before).

To use a wireless keyboard when the Switch is in portable mode, you can also rely on a USB-C OTG adapter with USB-A input.


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Insert the USB connector on the end of the wireless receiver into the standard USB port of the adapter, then insert the USB-C connector of the adapter into the corresponding input on the body of your Nintendo Switch and you’re done.

How to connect mouse and keyboard to Switch

Mouse keyboard switch

Now you might want to know how to connect mouse and keyboard to Switch without adapter? There is no simpler thing. Just plug in each of the connectors USB of your devices to the entrances that you find on the Dock, as I showed you in the chapter on keyboard with cable.

In fact, Switch is compatible with many mice. You can also connect these devices to the Switch’s USB-C input via USB-C OTG adapter, as I explained to you earlier. This way you can use a mouse even when the console is in portable mode.


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The problem, however, is that using a mouse on the Switch is practically useless. By doing a test yourself, in fact, you will notice that the device turns on and receives power from the console but cannot be used in games and, unlike the keyboard, not even in the system menus or in apps such as YouTube or Nintendo eShop. I know this is a bit disappointing, but there is still a way to use the mouse and keyboard not only in apps and menus but also in games, just like you would on PC.

You can use gods set of mouse and keyboard ad hoc. This is a rather expensive solution, but if you want to play Nintendo exclusives like on PC, it might be worth it!


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Also, there are mouse and keyboard adapters which also allow you to play just as if you were using a computer. I inform you that it is still about unofficial tools, so they may not work perfectly and may stop working following Switch firmware updates: be careful to first read the reviews and comments of those who have already purchased them. Then don’t say I didn’t warn you!


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How to connect a keyboard to Switch Lite

USB-C keyboard switch

So far I have talked to you about Nintendo Switch but you have disposition Switch Lite and you would really like to know if it is also possible to connect one to your console keyboard, real? Again, the answer is yes.

Not having this Switch model a Dock, you can follow the tips I gave you in the chapters dedicated to the standard Switch model and connect a keyboard to the console via a USB-C OTG adapter.


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