A former supervisor at New York-based United Radio, a company that works with Nintendo to repair the Japanese gaming giant’s broken devices, told Kotaku that the massive number of repairs resulted in a “very stressful” work environment and that “lots of” mistakes were made as a result.
The report goes on to state that “easily thousands” of Joy-Cons passed through United Radio every week.
Joy-Con drift causes controller input when the user isn’t actually touching the joystick, resulting in on-screen action the user doesn’t intend. Nintendo launched a free Joy-Con drift repair program and extended the Switch’s warranty back in 2019, but the problem persists, even with the recently released OLED model.
To be clear, Nintendo is the intermediary in this situation and acts as the middleman. That said, United Radio was reportedly forced to hire temporary workers to keep up with the Joy-Con repair demand. Kotaku’s source says that broken Joy-Cons from 2017 to 2018 were just replaced, but controllers after that time period were required to be repaired at a rate of 90 percent within four days of receiving them.
Back in August 2021, MobileSyrup contributor Colton Politte outlined what the Switch Joy-Con repair process is like in Canada, detailing that the process is mostly swift and straightforward on the consumer side of things.
Strangely, I’ve yet to encounter Joy-Con drift with the Switch or Switch OLED model, though I’m sure now that I’ve written those words, at least one pair of my trust gamepads will experience drift.
In other Nintendo-related news, a former employee recently accused the company of firing them for attempting to unionize.