Nintendo Is Being Sued Again Over The Joy-Con Controllers; This Time For Planned Obsolescence
Nintendo can't seem to catch a break when it comes to consumer discontent due to the infamous Joy-Con drift, and the latest lawsuit accuses the company of planned obsolescence.
Last year, players began to report that the analogue sticks on their Nintendo Switch's Joy-Con controllers were beginning to drift for no apparent reason. It wasn't a small number of players either, and this led law offices of Chimicles, Schwartz Kriner & Donaldson-Smith to open a class action investigation over the infamous drift.
Nintendo address the issue, but didn't openly admit that this was a problem, but they did promise that they would be fixing Joy-Con drifts completely free of charge; well, at least in North America. It may not have been the solution that players were hoping for, but at lest it was something.
Shuntaro Furukawa, President of Nintendo, even apologised for this issue that had been affecting a sizeable number of customers, but he didn't dig deeper into the whole lawsuit, as the problem was, and probably still is, being investigated.
Once the Nintendo Switch Lite was released, users also reported that their consoles had begun to drift, which is an even more aggravating problem considering that this renders the whole console useless, as the Joy-Con controlelrs aren't actually removable; it's one single unit. Because of this, the Nintendo Switch Lite was also added to the class action lawsuit.
Could things get any worse for the Tokyo-based company? Well, yes. Yes it can, and it has, as Nintendo is under fire once again due to the poor build of the Nintendo Switch's Joy-Con controllers; this time for planned obsolescence.
GamesIndustry.biz reports that French association UFC-Que Choisir is also suing Nintendo, as stated in a recent press release, for intentionally manufacturing Joy-Con controllers with parts that wear prematurely; thus causing the analogue sticks to drift.
A study conducted by UFC-Que Choisir revealed that the Joy-Con drift issue may be caused by "premature wear and tear of electronic circuits and an airtightness defect," which leads the Joy-Con controllers' analogue sticks to start drifting due to the presence of dust fragments inside the peripheral.
"The nature of the failure, how frequently it occurs for players, the limited lifespan of the products and the manufacturer's inertia despite being informed of the defect... These are all characteristic of planned obsolescence practices at Nintendo," reads the French association's statement.
UFC-Que Choisir is basically suing Nintendo in order for this whole Joy-Con drift issue to be tackled once and for all, since repairing the issue for free doesn't solve the problem; planned obsolesence is a shady practice, after all.
I've personally experienced the infamous Joy-Con drift, and can atest to it being an incredibly annoying issue; even more so now that evidence suggests that Nintendo may be doing this intentionally in order to sell more units — which, by the way, aren't even cheap to begin with. Bad form, Nintendo.