If you’ve played the Nintendo Switch for an extended period of time, you’ve probably run into controller drift. The Joy-Con controllers for the Switch are especially prone to this. You can read about Nintendo’s acknowledgement of the problem here. (Spoiler alert, they’ve tried to rescind this acknowledgement now). Now it looks like Microsoft is in trouble for a similar problem with Xbox One controllers. In April of this year, a class action lawsuit was filed about joystick drift for the various first party controllers for the Xbox One.
Plaintiff Donald McFadden filed the claim in the US District Court for the Western District of Washington. His claim is that Microsoft knows that the controllers face this issue and choose not to either extend the warranty on them or repair them. He claims to have purchased two Xbox One Elite Controllers, the first and second models, and they both had drifting issues within months of the purchase.
Without getting too intricate with the description of the joystick and controller, here’s how it happens.
The Main Issue With The Xbox One Controller Joysticks
The problem lies with the mechanism of the joystick. What’s called the potentiometer. This part of the joystick translates the movement of the stick to the game. The component scrapes material off a track inside the mechanism and results in unwarranted electrical contact (IE you moving the stick) without an input from the person.
There’s now an update to that case in April. More plaintiffs have been added to the case. It’s also been amended to include recent Xbox One Elite Controllers. This amended version still alleges that Microsoft has known about the issues for some time, and refuses to publicly acknowledge them. The plaintiffs are seeking monetary relief in addition to Microsoft disclosing that the controllers have this issue.
My Personal Experience
The article doesn’t mention whether or not the standard Xbox One controllers face this issue. I have owned an Xbox Elite Version One controller for about a year and a half now. In that time, I haven’t noticed any issues with the joysticks or any other part of the controller. I have an Xbox Elite Series Two coming with my Xbox Series X when that launches, so I have no experience so far with the Elite Two controller.
I’m just one person, but I haven’t noticed anyone else with this issue out there. So this could be some hot air from angry customers. Or it could be a systematic issue with the Elite controllers that hasn’t popped up for me yet. What do you think of this lawsuit? Have you faced issues with the Xbox Elite controllers?
Let us know in the comments or on Facebook at That Gaming Show.
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Source: Video Games Chronicle