Nintendo Switch's smartphone app finally launches on July 21

During today's Nintendo Direct livestream, Nintendo revealed that its companion app for online play debuts July 21 — just in time for the launch of its upcoming ink-'em-up multiplayer sequel, Splatoon 2.

Simply titled Nintendo Switch Online, the app is a hub for communicating online with other Nintendo Switch players. The app's primary two functions are sending invites to your friends via their Nintendo Account or social media, and facilitating voice chat over your device's microphone.

For Splatoon 2 players, however, the app also supports SplatNet 2 — a special side-service on Nintendo's new app that will track Splatoon players' play history, gear, and other stats.

Though SplatNet 2 shows promise for more special-made functionality on the Nintendo Switch Online app (crossing our fingers for Super SmashNet one day) the features otherwise seem limited to just game invites and voice chat — no word yet on other amenities like in-app messaging or multiple chat channels —
but then again, it's still an early version.

Online features for both the Nintendo Switch and its app will be free at launch, though Nintendo plans to bring the full-fledged version of its internet-enabled service (with hopefully more premium features) in 2018, where it will cost $19.99 (around £15.50/AU$27) for a year-long membership.

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