Pokemon Home: What Is It And Why You Need To Have It

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The Pokemon fanbase has grown extensively ever since its first broadcast on TV. However, watching the series at times isn’t enough to satisfy one’s inner fan. Nintendo is well-aware of this and, consequently, they created Pokemon games to quench that thirst. These games enabled Pokemon fans to live out their childhood dream of becoming a Pokemon Master. Whether it’s collecting all Pokemon or engaging in Pokemon battles, Pokemon games are always fun and interactive. Even so, one of the setbacks of playing separate games of the same series is the lack of continuity. Thankfully, Nintendo has answered the call of Pokemon players across the globe by introducing Pokemon Home.

With it, you can now streamline all of your Pokemon, manage them within one database, and more. Here’s everything you need to know about Pokemon Home.


What Is Pokemon Home?

Pokemon Home
© Photo by Nintendo

Cloud-based Pokemon management is nothing new to Pokemon games, which happens to be some of the top Switch apps. In the past, services like Pokemon Silver and Gold’s Time Capsule addressed that need. Further down the line, they introduced Pokemon Bank for the 3DS Pokemon games. It is the latest edition in this line of Pokemon management services.

With Pokemon Home, you are able to store and manage all your past and present Pokemon across different games. You can even transfer your Pokemon into these games to help you out with your battles. Do note though that it’s only compatible with a few platforms, more recently with the Nintendo Switch. Nonetheless, if you’ve been playing Pokemon since the 3DS era, you can definitely benefit from using Pokemon Home. 

With that said, let’s check out the specific features of Pokemon Home.


Pokemon Home Features

It may or may not be for you, and that’s perfectly fine. However, we highly suggest you review its features thoroughly before you make a decision not to download it. After all, the base Pokemon Home app is free, so there’s no harm in checking it out. Moving on, there are three main ones: storage, trading, and transferring. Let’s take a look at each. 


Storage And Pokemon Management

Storage And Pokemon Management
© Photo by Pokemon Home

The first feature is the ability to store and manage Pokemon from different games. With just one Nintendo account, you can use Pokemon Home as the avenue to connect all Pokemon games that you play on different devices.

You can keep track of your Pokemon including ones with different forms (like Gigantamax and Mega Evolve). Plus, you get bonus features that only Pokemon Home offers such as mystery gifts, trading with fellow users, etc.

Furthermore, you also get special benefits if you download the app on both mobile and Switch. For example, the mobile app lets you find overviews of battles and competitions for Pokemon Sword and Shield.

On the other hand, the Switch app is the only one that allows for transferring with Pokemon Sword and Shield. There are tons more features that both offer and they truly do complete each other.



Pokemon Trading

trade Pokemon Home
© Screenshot from Pokemon Home Website

Becoming a Pokemon master means trying to collect all the Pokemon you can and winning all Pokemon battles. However, it’s not that easy to catch a Pokemon even while playing all the different games. Moreover, there are certain Pokemon you’ll need for specific reasons but can’t seem to obtain them. The Pokemon Company is aware of that and, consequently, included a trading feature within Pokemon Home.

Yes, that’s right! You can trade Pokemon with other users across the globe. Whether they’re your next-door neighbor or a foreigner from overseas, you are able to trade Pokemon with each other. It incorporates this feature in four different ways: Wonder Box, Global Trade System (GTS), Room Trade, and Friend Trade. Each one has specific features depending on what you want. 

For example, Wonder Box is great if you just want to trade your Pokemon for a random Pokemon. On the other hand, you can use GTS if you have a specific Pokemon in mind. If you’re uncomfortable trading with strangers, try friends trade or, better yet, trade with more people using Room Trade as you’ll probably be luckier that way! With all these trading features incorporated into it, you’ll now have a better chance of winning your Pokemon battles.


Pokemon Transferring

Pokemon Home Transferring
© Photo by Pokemon Home

Last, but certainly not least, you can use Pokemon Home to transfer Pokemon from your Pokemon games. This includes games like Pokemon Sword and Shield, Pokemon Let’s Go Pikachu and Eevee, Pokemon Bank, and eventually, Pokemon Go. However, you can only transfer to Pokemon Home, not the other way around.

The only games that allow reverse transfers are Pokemon Sword and Shield. There’s also Pokemon Let’s Go, but that one comes with a catch (more on that later). 

Let’s first tackle transferring to and from Pokemon Sword and Shield. It’s a given that you can transfer Sword and Shield Pokemon to Pokemon Home. However, you can also transfer any Pokemon from Pokemon Home back to Sword and Shield, regardless of which game those Pokemon came from.

The only limitation is the type of Pokemon you can transfer to Sword and Shield. That’s because Sword and Shield only accept Pokemon that are available in their Pokedex. 

Moreover, you can also transfer Pokemon to and from Pokemon Home with Pokemon Let’s Go. The catch, though, is that Pokemon Let’s Go games only accept Pokemon from other Let’s Go games. For example, Pokemon from Let’s Go Pikachu can only accept Pokemon from Let’s Go Eevee, and vice versa. They cannot accept Pokemon that came from Sword and Shield, Pokemon Bank, or Pokemon Go. Furthermore, if your Let’s Go Pokemon was transferred to Sword and Shield, your Let’s Go games will not accept them back.


Premium Plan

Like any cloud-based service, Pokemon Home doesn’t come completely free. Well, it does for most of its core features. However, more extensive features (for example, the ability to store more than 30 Pokemon) hide behind a paywall. If you’re serious about Pokemon, a Pokemon Home subscription will cost you about $3 monthly or $16 yearly. With a premium subscription, you’ll get additional perks such as:

  1. Pokemon Bank to Pokemon Home transfers
  2. 6,000 Pokemon Slots (the free version only allows for 30)
  3. Wonder Boxes can hold up to 10 Pokemon at once
  4. Global Trading System (GTS) can hold up to 3 Pokemon at once
  5. Making and hosting Room Trades (the free version only allows you to participate, not create)
  6. The ability to judge and find out a Pokemon’s potential strength


With all of these features, you might want to consider purchasing a premium plan. However, it’s not unheard of to subscribe for a while then unsubscribe later when you can’t afford the plan anymore.

What happens to your Pokemon then? Does it delete all of your Pokemon like it did on Nintendo Bank? Fear not because Pokemon Home doesn’t delete all of your stored Pokemon. Instead, you won’t be able to access or withdraw any Pokemon beyond your 30th.

Yes, it’s a bummer, but at least you won’t lose any data until you re-subscribe. Hence, we suggest you transfer your Pokemon from Pokemon Home to Pokemon games before you hit that unsubscribe button.


Release Date

When is the release date of Pokemon Home? Well, you can already download the app on your Nintendo Switch right now. It’s also already available on mobile platforms. Both versions are completely free to download and will only require payment if you want to avail of the premium plan. Pokemon Home was released early this year on February 11, 2020. However, Pokemon Go compatibility is set to become available on a future date before 2020 ends.


What Are The Games I Can Use Pokemon Home With?

There are many direct games that Pokemon Home is compatible with. In addition, thanks to Pokemon Bank, you can now transfer from older Pokemon games to the Pokemon Home platform. It does take a bit of work, though. Let’s run through the games you can use Pokemon Home with. 


Pokemon Sword and Shield

Pokemon Sword and Shield
© Screenshot from Pokemon Home Website

Using Pokemon Sword and Shield with Pokemon Home is arguably the most beneficial. That’s because you can freely transfer Pokemon to and from Pokemon Home to Sword and Shield.

With the limitation only being Pokedex compatibility, Pokemon Home can significantly enhance your Sword and Shield experience. If you need a certain Pokemon for specific battles, you can get them from other games. The possibilities are endless!


Pokemon Let’s Go Pikachu and Let’s Go Eevee

Pokemon Let’s Go Pikachu and Let’s Go Eevee
© Screenshot from Pokemon Home Website

If you’re a Pokemon fan, you probably got a copy of Pokemon Let’s Go Pikachu and Eevee. Regardless if you have one or both games, you can make use of it to a great extent. It’s also extra beneficial if you also play the Pokemon Sword and Shield versions.

That’s mainly because some Pokemon can only exist in Sword and Shield if they came from Pokemon Let’s Go version (like Melmetal). That gives players who own both games a huge advantage. On the other hand, you can also use it to store your Let’s Go Pokemon for collecting purposes.


Pokemon Go

Pokemon Go to Pokemon Home
© Photo by Nintendo Life

Although it’s not yet available, Pokemon Go is expected to become compatible with Pokemon Home before 2020 ends. Thanks to this, you will be able to collect Pokemon from Pokemon Go and keep them all in one digital space. Also, Nintendo is likely to keep Pokemon Home as its core cloud-based Pokemon storage for the foreseeable future. That means storing everything you’ve collected here is a brilliant idea. What’s more, you can utilize Pokemon from Pokemon Go to your Sword and Shield versions.


Pokemon Bank (Older Games)

Pokemon Home bank
©  Screenshot from Pokemon Home Website

Older games in the Pokemon series were great, but the collection of Pokemon there won’t serve a purpose after you’re done playing. That is, until now.

With Pokemon Bank, you can transfer older 3DS Pokemon to Pokemon Home and use them with the latest games.

Fans and collectors since way back will benefit the most from this feature. If you’ve been collecting Pokemon since the 3DS era, then you can rejoice because your efforts will not go to waste!

Although, beware that this feature is only available for premium subscribers.


Difference Between Mobile App And Nintendo Switch App

As you may already know, there’s more than one version of the app that you can download. The app exists as both a mobile app and a Nintendo Switch app. However, there are stark differences between the two, and using both makes the most out of the Pokemon Home experience. Check the table below to get a brief picture of the differences:


Feature Nintendo Switch App Mobile App
Move Pokemon with Let’s Go games
Transfer Pokemon with Pokemon Sword and Shield
Move Pokemon with Pokemon Bank
Judge Pokemon feature
Trade Pokemon feature
Get mystery gifts
Review battle information
View news about games
Trade Pokemon Home Points for Battle Points (BP)


As you can see, some games require the Nintendo Switch app to allow for Pokemon transfers. However, some of the features may only exist within the mobile app (like trading Pokemon, getting mystery gifts, etc). If you want to reap all of Pokemon Home’s benefits, it’s best if you download it for both devices. However, keep in mind that some of the features listed require a premium subscription for them to work.


Where Can I Download It?

You can download the Pokemon Home app on three platforms: Android, iOS, and Nintendo Switch. Like all mobile apps, you may download it on either the App Store or Google Play Store. Also, even if you have both Android and iOS devices, you can sync your apps with one Nintendo account.

Furthermore, you can also download the app on the Nintendo Switch platform. They have a native app in their app store so you can use Pokemon Home with Nintendo Switch Pokemon Games. 



Catching them all (Pokemon) is probably the ultimate goal of any Pokemon enthusiast. Whether you’ve been playing Pokemon since the 3DS era or just started on the Switch, Pokemon Home will serve as a hub for all your Pokemon across multiple platforms. With it, you can stay organized and keep all your beloved Pokemon in one place. Moreover, it will give you a big advantage if you’re playing various Pokemon games. The ability to transfer from Pokemon Home to specific games gives players a big chance to win their Pokemon battles. So, what are you waiting for? Download Pokemon Home now and embark on your next Pokemon adventure!