A texting app on the Nintendo Switch!

Ever wanted to text your friends directly from your gaming console? The day has finally come!

With Gamer Text, you can text your friends and family directly from the Nintendo Switch.

What is Gamer Text?

Gamer Text is a companion texting app for the Nintendo Switch. Users have the ability to send and receive SMS messages from their Twilio phone number.

What are the business opportunities for Gamer Text?

Gamer Text could be launched as a subscription service where users with Twilio SIM cards can pair their phone number to the app. While phone companion apps on laptops and desktops are plentiful, there exists an untapped segment within the gaming consoles.

Our project is a proof of concept that demonstrates that Twilio services can be ported to the Nintendo Switch, but has the potential to be ported to many consoles and IoT devices.

What were your biggest challenges?

We dove into this project without realizing the full complexity of what we were aiming to achieve. Substantial time was used to setup environments and learn how to use the various tools created for homebrew developers. Our entire project was in C++, including the Twilio API calls, which presented a lot of blockers. Many of the supporting libraries did not exist and had to be recreated from scratch.

What libraries did we use?

We used a community built UI framework called Plutonium. This framework is extremely basic and does not have most features normally in mainstream GUI frameworks. We used curl for our REST API calls. We used Twilio for SMS integration.

What did we learn?

We should have set up our environments earlier given that we lost a lot of time setting up the emulator for the Nintendo Switch. We went with Plutonium, but it was probably a poor choice. Our project was technically ambitious and as such we didn't have much time to add polish to the rougher edges.

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