Nintendo Switch Turned Into Fully Functioning Linux Tablet In Latest Hack

Just over a week ago we talked about an exploit that took advantage of an unpatchable flaw in existing Switch consoles to run Linux on Nintendo's latest. At the time, there were a lot of folks out there wondering what the point of that hack was. However, the value comes in this second hack that fail0verflow has been able to pull off.

Getting Linux on the Switch was the just first step in turning the Switch console into a Linux tablet that is able to surf the web. Fail0verflow has been able to run Linux and implement a full web browser with touchscreen support. You can see in the video that the Switch screen supports all the pinch-to-zoom gestures that are used on other tablets.

The video makes Switch look like it was designed from the get go to be a tablet, but it should come as too big of a surprise given that the NVIDIA Tegra processor inside has been used on Android tablets in the past. The big deal about this hack is that Nintendo didn’t see fit to give the Switch a consumer facing web browser. This browser, however, has tabs just like you would expect of a modern browser.

The video shows the posting of tweets from the Switch. If there are any web surfing limitations to this hack, the video doesn't mention them. We can’t be the only people wondering if the web browser would also support Netflix. Lots of Switch owners are wondering what the hold up with getting Netflix on the Switch might be.

Fail0verflow noted when it first showed Debian Linux running on the Switch that Nintendo would be unable to patch the flaw it leveraged to install Linux on the Switch on current generation hardware. The hacker team also noted that no modchip was required to get the Switch to run Linux, and that the exploit relied on a bootrom bug.