It has come to light that — for at least some Switch users in North America — the Switch eShop now connects to Google Analytics by default. Introduced recently, and also appearing in the new Nintendo Switch Online ‘app’ that appeared with the latest firmware update, it seems that anybody with a US Nintendo Account (and possibly other non-EU/Australian accounts) is now automatically opted in for data to be shared between the platform holder and Google.
This was pointed out by Reddit user u/coors_girth after they noticed a previously unseen option appearing at the very bottom of the profile information screen on the console. We were unable to find the option on our European eShops, possible due to differences in European privacy laws, but the setting is present on our US Nintendo Accounts. Another user noted the option also appears on the Japanese Switch eShop.
In a world where extensive data collection is the norm, this might not bother you in the slightest. However, if you don’t wish to share this data, it’s easy to change your preferences.
To deactivate the data collection, open the Switch eShop on your console, select your profile icon in the top right of the screen to view your profile information, scroll down to the very bottom and change the Google Analytics Preferences setting to ‘Don’t Share’ (you’ll have to repeat this for all affected accounts):
You will also have to fire up the new Nintendo Switch Online menu app that came as part of the latest update and change your preferences there.
To do so, select the Nintendo Switch Online app on the bottom left of console’s Home screen and, once open, select your membership info (the big rectangular box with your icon in the top left corner):
Navigate to the bottom of the larger menu that appears and you’ll see the small print ‘Google Analytics Preferences Here‘ at the bottom:
Again, this doesn’t appear as an option on EU eShops, and may not even appear on every non-EU account — complicated privacy rules can vary depending on the state or country you’re in and other factors. Still, if online privacy is something you take seriously, it’s always good to be in the know.