Twitch is a great place to share your gaming experiences or join others in theirs. As with any platform that’s been around as long as Twitch has, though, sometimes you may regret some earlier choices. You may want to know how to change Twitch names as a result.
Maybe you joined the platform when you were young and are now embarrassed by what 12-year-old you thought was a funny username. Alternatively, your channel could be growing and you want to capitalize on it by changing your name to something catchier. Whatever the case, here’s what you need to know about changing your name on Twitch.
Things to Know Before Changing Your Twitch Name
Before diving into how to change your Twitch name, there are a few things you should know first. Go over these considerations before deciding to change anything.
Username vs. Display Name
First, it’s important to distinguish between your username and your display name. Chances are, if you’re looking up how to change Twitch names, you’re talking about usernames, but you can also change your display name, which is easier but more limited.
Your username is what you see in the URL for your channel. For example, the URL for Ninja — the most popular Twitch streamer — is Twitch.tv/ninja. The all-lowercase “ninja” is his username. However, you’ll notice that the name on top of his profile and on all his posts is Ninja with a capital “N.” That variation is his display name.
Unlike other apps, Twitch display names are always a variation of the account’s username. It won’t let you add, take away or switch out any characters. You can only change the capitalization. So, using the Ninja example, he could change his display name nINJA, NiNjA, NinJa or any other variation with capitals and lowercase letters, but he can’t set it to anything like Ninja14 or Mr. Ninja.
If you just want to change your name’s capitalization, you’ll want to adjust your display name. Anything more than that requires a change to your username.
There are Limits to Changing Your Username
You should also know that Twitch limits how often you can change your username. You can only change your name once every 60 days, so be careful if you’re thinking of switching names as a temporary joke. Given that it’ll be two months before you can change it again, the joke may not be all that temporary.
It’s also worth noting that Twitch holds on to abandoned usernames for at least six months. That means once you confirm the change, you can’t switch back to your old username until that six-month period has passed. Keep in mind that once it becomes available again, it’s available to everyone. There’s a chance someone could take your old username before you can switch back to it.
Thankfully, there are no time or availability limits on your display name. You can change those as often as you want with no waiting period, but you’ll have fewer options because it can only be a capitalization variation on your username.
When You May Not Want to Change Your Twitch Name
One last thing before we get into how to change Twitch names. Given all the restrictions around switching to a new username, it’s worth questioning whether you should change it. In many cases, it won’t hurt you to change your name, but there are some situations where it’s better to leave it as is.
Many people manage to make money from Twitch streaming through the partner program, affiliate marketing, audience donations and more. If you fall into that category, you may want to think twice before changing your name.
While a name change won’t impact your monetization, it could make it harder for people who’ve heard about you to find you. Current followers may also be confused by the change and think they’ve accidentally followed someone else, leading them to unfollow.
To be fair, many people rebrand and end up with more followers, but there will be some loss at first. If you’re not ready for that or don’t have a clear plan for a bigger rebranding, it’s best to keep your current name for now.
How to Change Twitch Names on Desktop
Given that PC gaming is the unofficial standard for Twitch streaming, let’s start there. Here’s how to change Twitch names on a computer.
Start by opening your browser of choice and going to Twitch.tv. Sign in with your current username and password, then click on your profile icon in the top-right corner of the page. A small menu will pop up, where you’ll scroll down to “Settings” and click that.
Once you’re in your settings, make sure you’re on the “Profile” tab. Scroll until you see a section labeled “Profile Settings,” and click the pencil icon next to your username. It’ll tell you in small text under your username if it hasn’t been long enough for you to change it again. If you’re in the clear, clicking the pencil icon will open a dialogue box where you can enter a new name.
Depending on your settings, you may have to go through a two-factor authentication setup. That’s a good security measure and one you should keep, but it will add a minute or two to the process.
A green checkmark will appear if your new username is available. If it’s not, try another name or a variation on it with different numbers and characters. Once you’ve settled on one you like, click “Update.”
How to Change Twitch Names on Mobile
You can do the same from the Twitch mobile app if you prefer. Here’s how to change Twitch names on Android or iOS.
First, open the Twitch app on your phone and log in if you’re not already signed in. Just like on PC, you’ll tap your profile icon, but this time, it’ll be in the top-left corner. From there, tap “Account Settings,” then “Account” and then “Edit Profile.”
Look for the “About” section of your profile and tap your username. A screen will appear telling you about the restrictions around changing your name. Tap “Change Username” to get past it and enter your new name. If it’s available, the text box will turn green and a green checkmark will appear. Hit “Save” in the top-right corner to confirm the change.
Get More Out of Twitch
Given all the complications around it, you may not want to switch your username in every situation. If you decide you want to, though, learning how to change your Twitch name is a relatively easy process. You can then go on using Twitch how you want to.
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