How to transfer game data between internal storage and microSD card on Nintendo Switch

MicroSD Nintendo Switch
MicroSD Nintendo Switch (Image credit: iMore)

Nintendo Switch players can transfer data between internal storage and microSD card easily. This update arrived in 2020 and is such a big deal because if players wanted to do this before, they had to redownload the data onto their gaming systems. Whether you're using the Switch or the Switch Lite, here's how to transfer game data between microSD cards and the Nintendo Switch's internal storage.

Note: Some Nintendo Switch game data isn't capable of moving between internal storage and the microSD card. So while this update will work for the majority of data on the Switch, it won't work for all of it. If you want to see all details, click here.

How to transfer game data between microSD card and internal storage

  1. Select System Settings from the main Switch menu.
  2. Scroll down to Data Management.Source: iMore

How To Transfer Save Data: Select System Settings (Image credit: iMore)

How To Transfer Save Data: Scroll to Data Management (Image credit: iMore)
  1. Select Move Data Between System / microSD Card.
  2. You now have two options. To move game data to the microSD card, select Move to microSD Card. If you want to move game data from the micro SD card to internal memory, select Move to System Memory.Source: iMore

How To Transfer Save Data: Move Data Between System/microSD Card (Image credit: iMore)

How To Transfer Save Data: Move to microSD Card or Move to System Memory (Image credit: iMore)
  1. Select the game data you want to transfer.
  2. Now select Move Data.Source: iMore

How To Transfer Save Data: Select the Game Data to Transfer (Image credit: iMore)

How To Transfer Save Data: Select Move Data (Image credit: iMore)
  1. Select Move.

How To Transfer Save Data: Select Move (Image credit: iMore)

That's all there is to it. Now you can transfer the game data between your microSD card and your internal storage. This is a beneficial thing to do if you run out of space on the Switch console's internal storage or if you want to use a new micro SD card.

Just keep in mind that certain games' data cannot be transferred, so this won't work for every game you have, but it will work for most of them.

Additional Equipment

Whether you own the Nintendo Switch or the Switch Lite, here are some of the best accessories for both systems.

Nintendo Switch Pro Controller

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Pro Controller (opens in new tab) ($70 at Best Buy)

This controller feels great in your hands and is much larger than the Joy-Cons. It also supports amiibo scanning, motion controls, and rumble.

Hori compact playstand for Nintendo Switch

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Hori Compact Playstand (opens in new tab) ($21 at Amazon)

This is the perfect stand for when you want to play in tabletop mode. It raises the screen a few inches and offers three different viewing angles.

SanDisk 128GB microSD card

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128GB micoSD Card (opens in new tab) ($30 at Best Buy)

If you've played or plan on playing several different Switch games, you're going to want to invest in this microSD card. It gives you 128GB, which is plenty of room for save data, screenshots, and downloads.

Rebecca Spear
Gaming Editor

Gaming aficionado Rebecca Spear is iMore's dedicated gaming editor with a focus on Nintendo Switch and iOS gaming. You’ll never catch her without her Switch or her iPad Air handy. If you’ve got a question about Pokémon, The Legend of Zelda, or just about any other Nintendo series check out her guides to help you out. Rebecca has written thousands of articles in the last six years including hundreds of extensive gaming guides, previews, and reviews for both Switch and Apple Arcade. She also loves checking out new gaming accessories like iPhone controllers and has her ear to the ground when it comes to covering the next big trend.