What to do when nothing else works.

Like any other app-driven platform, every once in a while the Nintendo Switch gets a little lost when jumping from one app to another and freezes. None of the buttons work on any of the controllers, pressing the power button in to turn the screen off doesn't work, and the touch screen doesn't respond to your taps. Not a fun time, especially if you're trying to get in a few minutes of game time on your work break.

It seems like you're stuck here until the Switch figures out how to unstick itself, but there are actually two different ways to deal with a frozen Switch. The good news is neither are particularly complicated, but only one of them works when you're at home.

Put your Switch back in its dock

Nintendo Switch

The act of docking and undocking your Switch briefly interrupts just about everything happening on the console. You barely notice it because it happens so fast, but there's a brief stutter where the console makes that switch (I regret nothing) from one state to another.

If your Switch is frozen, dock it or undock it and see what happens in many cases, you'll see the console returns to normal functioning position and everything is great. No additional steps required, you can return to your regularly scheduled gameplay.

Power button reboot

Nintendo Switch

Pressing the power button in once may not do anything when your Switch is frozen, but there's a hardware reboot in that power button that will work no matter what. As long as the console has power, you'll be able to reboot it this way.

Just press and hold that power button for 15 seconds. At the 15 second mark, the screen will go dark for a moment and then light back up a moment later with the Nintendo logo. You'll see the Switch logo next, just like a normal boot sequence, and all of a sudden the Switch is back to working order. Hooray!

Any questions?

Do you have any questions about how to get your Switch unfrozen? Put them in the comments and we'll help you out.