With the release of iOS 16, iPadOS 16, and tvOS 16, iPhones, iPads, and Apple TVs now include support for pairing Nintendo Switch Joy-Con and Pro controllers. Keep reading to learn how it's done.

nintendo joy cons
As many Apple Arcade games enthusiasts will know, Apple's mobile devices and Apple TV set-top box support some popular game controllers right out of the box. For example, these devices have supported PlayStation 5 DualSense and Xbox Series X controllers since April 2021.

While not well advertised by Apple, the release of iOS 16, iPadOS 16, and tvOS 16 also added support for the Nintendo Switch Joy-Con and Pro controllers, so now users can play better than they might otherwise be able to using on-screen touch controls or their ‌Apple TV‌ Remote.

What's more, the great thing about using Joy-Con controllers is that you can connect either a single Joy-Con or both Joy-Cons, and when you connect two Joy-Cons they will appear as a single unified MFi controller to your games.

It's even possible to dynamically switch between using the Joy-Cons individually or as one combined controller by holding the screenshot capture and home buttons for a few seconds.

How to Connect a Joy-Con to iPhone or iPad

The following the steps show you how to pair your Nintendo controller to your iPhone or iPad, and we'll be using a single Joy-Con in our example.

  1. Remove a Joy-Con from your Nintendo Switch.
  2. Press and hold the Sync button on the black edge of the controller.
    joy-con

  3. Wait for the lights alongside the Sync button to rove back and forth, indicating that the Joy-Con is in pairing mode.
    joy-con

  4. Launch the Settings app on your ‌iPhone‌ or ‌iPad‌.
  5. Tap Bluetooth.
  6. Wait for your Joy-Con to appear in the "Other Devices" section, then tap it to connect.
    settings

Your Joy-Con will appear in the "My Devices" list and the pairing lights on the controller will go out except for one, indicating that it has successfully connected and is ready to use.

How to Connect a Joy-Con to Apple TV

  1. Remove a Joy-Con from your Nintendo Switch.
  2. Press and hold the Sync button on the black edge of the controller.
    joy-con

  3. Wait for the lights alongside the Sync button to rove back and forth, indicating that the Joy-Con is in pairing mode.
    joy-con

  4. On your ‌Apple TV‌, select the Settings app.
  5. Select Remotes and Devices -> Bluetooth.
  6. Wait for your Joy-Con to appear in the "Other Devices" section, then tap it to connect.

You'll receive an onscreen notification on your ‌Apple TV‌ confirming that the Joy-Con has successfully paired and is ready to use.

Popular Stories

airpods pro 2 pink

Apple Releases New AirPods Pro 2 Firmware

Tuesday May 28, 2024 11:46 am PDT by
Apple today released new firmware update for both the Lightning and USB-C versions of the AirPods Pro 2. The new firmware is version 6F7, up from the 6B34 firmware released in November. Apple does not provide details on what features might be included in the refreshed firmware beyond "bug fixes and other improvements," so it is unclear what's new in the update. Apple does not give...
maxresdefault

Report: These 10 New AI Features Are Coming in iOS 18

Sunday May 26, 2024 12:57 pm PDT by
iOS 18 and macOS 15 will offer an array of new AI features such as auto-generated emojis, suggested replies to emails and messages, and more, Bloomberg's Mark Gurman reports. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. A significant portion of Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) is expected to focus on AI features. Writing his latest "Power On" newsletter, Gurman...
wwdc 2024 main image feature

Apple Confirms Time for June 10 WWDC Keynote, Shares Full Schedule

Tuesday May 28, 2024 10:21 am PDT by
Apple today shared details on the schedule that it has prepared for the 2024 Worldwide Developers Conference, which is set to take place from June 10 to June 14. While WWDC always includes a keynote, Apple has confirmed that it will be held on June 10 at 10:00 a.m. Pacific Time. Apple is expected to announce iOS 18, iPadOS 18, macOS 15, tvOS 18, watchOS 11, and visionOS 2, and at this time,...
Apple iPhone 15 Pro lineup Action button 230912

Apple Green-Lights iPhone 16 Pro Display Production

Tuesday May 28, 2024 5:13 am PDT by
Samsung Display and LG Display have been granted approval for mass production of OLED screens for Apple's upcoming iPhone 16 Pro models, Korea's The Elec reports. Both suppliers apparently received approval earlier this month, paving the way for the commencement of mass production of screens for the iPhone 16 Pro models. While Samsung Display will supply OLED screens for all four iPhone 16...
iPad Pro Landscape Apple Logo Feature

Apple Says Future iPads Could Feature Landscape Apple Logo

Monday May 27, 2024 6:31 am PDT by
French website Numerama interviewed three senior Apple employees about the new iPad Pro models that launched earlier this month. While the discussion did not reveal many new details, it did mention one potential change for future iPads. While the Apple logo on the back of iPads is positioned so that it appears upright in vertical orientation, the devices are often used in landscape...