Nintendo Switch could soon (unofficially) run Windows 10

Windows 10 ARM on Nintendo switch
Image credit: Ben (@imbushuo) (Image credit: Ben (@imbushuo))

Here’s a novel one: fancy running Windows 10 – or at least the ARM spin of Microsoft’s OS – on your Nintendo Switch? Well, that could be possible, at least if an unofficial project that's currently in its early stages pans out.

This is an effort driven by one of the developers previously involved in bringing Windows 10 on ARM to the Raspberry Pi, so why not the Switch as well? Previously, this bunch of intrepid porters have also got the operating system running on old Lumia 950 XL smartphones to boot.

The caveat here is that Windows 10 ARM isn’t currently functional on Nintendo’s console, but the developer, Ben, believes he can get it going with some work and bug-squashing.

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He noted the primary work necessary was a “memory regions fix”, along with the fact that the project “needs massive cleanup and bug fix, additional ACPI and USB work needed”.

Switching things up a gear

While this is certainly an eye-opening development, and an impressive feat, the concept probably falls into the category of ‘cool’ rather than ‘actually useful’. Although there could be certain use cases for getting Windows 10 on the Switch, or just neat tricks like maybe running Office on the console (if you also hook up a keyboard).

Of course, performance will likely be sluggish, particularly if you’re trying to do anything vaguely demanding (and don’t forget Windows 10 ARM has its own limitations too, even with the ‘always connected’ laptops specifically designed for Microsoft’s spin on the desktop OS).

So yes, this is very cool to see, but remember that it’s in the very early stages right now. Not to mention that in practical terms, alternative projects to bring other operating systems across – such as Android, with (unofficial) support for that being further down the line as we saw last week – will likely prove more fruitful and run better on Nintendo’s console.

Via Windows Latest

Darren is a freelancer writing news and features for TechRadar (and occasionally T3) across a broad range of computing topics including CPUs, GPUs, various other hardware, VPNs, antivirus and more. He has written about tech for the best part of three decades, and writes books in his spare time (his debut novel - 'I Know What You Did Last Supper' - was published by Hachette UK in 2013).