How To Power Your Nintendo Switch With Joy-Cons And Pro Controllers

How To Power Your Nintendo Switch With Joy-Cons And Pro Controllers

The Nintendo Switch is a versatile home gaming console that can be played docked and handheld easily. While most users are familiar with powering on the console directly using the power button, there is a much simpler way to turn on the Switch using its controllers – the Joy-Cons or a Pro Controller. Here, we will explain the simple process of how to turn on Switch controllers.

Turning On The Switch With Joy-Cons

One of the easiest ways to power on the Nintendo Switch while it is docked is by using the Joy-Con controllers bundled with the console. Both the left and right Joy-Cons have a circular home button near the top that can be used for this purpose. To know how to turn on Switch controllers using Joy-Cons:

  • Ensure the Joy-Cons are paired to your Switch by sliding them onto the console’s side rails in handheld mode.
  • Dock your Nintendo Switch as usual and ensure the Joy-Cons are connected on either side.
  • Press the circular home button on either the left or right Joy-Con. This instantly recognizes the controller and prompts the Switch to power from sleep/standby mode.
  • Within a few seconds, the Switch home screen will load up, and you can begin playing immediately without manually pressing any buttons on the console itself.

Turning On The Switch With A Pro Controller

An alternative to the Joy-Cons is using a Nintendo Switch Pro Controller to turn on the console. The Pro Controller offers a more traditional controller layout and feel for TV mode gaming. To know how to turn on Switch controllers using a Pro Controller:

  • Pair your Pro Controller to the Nintendo Switch by pressing the pair button on the top if not already synced.
  • Dock the Switch as you usually would for TV gameplay.
  • Press the large home button situated in the middle of the Pro Controller.
  • Just like with the Joy-Cons, this will instantly power on the Switch from sleep/standby without needing to press any console buttons.
  • You can start playing immediately once the home menu loads on the TV.

Simple And Convenient Functionality

Being able to turn on the Nintendo Switch using its controllers or learning how to turn on Switch controllers provides a simple yet effective functionality. It allows users to instantly wake the console without reaching the actual Switch device when docked. This is a huge convenience, especially for those who want a seamless transition between picking up a controller and starting gameplay on the TV. In a matter of seconds, with just a single button press, the user can have the home menu up and running with no unnecessary additional steps.

Common Mistake

Interestingly, many long-time Nintendo Switch owners must know how to turn on Switch controllers. This is likely because the functionality goes against expectations stemming from other video game systems. For example, on other platforms like PlayStation and Xbox – controllers do not directly turn on the console. Due to the established norm set by competing devices, it can be easy to assume the same rules apply to the Nintendo Switch incorrectly.

However, once aware of this simple feature, most users appreciate its convenience for seamless TV gameplay. Learning how to properly turn on the Switch with Joy-Cons or a Pro Controller can help eliminate unnecessary confusion.


Powering on the Nintendo Switch does not need to involve pressing buttons on the console itself. With just a single press of the home or pairing button on Joy-Con controllers or a Pro Controller, the Switch can instantly wake from sleep or standby mode for instant play.

Hopefully, this guide on how to turn on Switch controllers has helped explain the straightforward process of utilizing this often-overlooked functionality. Turning on the Switch with its controllers allows an effortless transition between picking up a controller and starting gameplay. 

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