May 16, 2022

Xbox Facing Lawsuit Over Controller “Drift”

As the launch of the Xbox Series X comes closer and closer, could this lawsuit affect the company negatively? After all, Nintendo has suffered some consequences over a similar series of claims.

Controller drift complaints have hit Xbox.

A large volume of Xbox owners said to have experienced various issues across various controller models. As such, a class-action lawsuit is currently taking place.

Plaintiff Donald McFadden, who filed the lawsuit, claims how customers are experiencing these issues after the 90-day warranties expire, as noted by VGC. Therefore, these same customers are having to fork out the repairs themselves.

You’ll recall we recently covered Nintendo facing similar claims over their Switch Joy-Cons.

McFadden claims to have purchased an Xbox Elite controller, which, in the US, retails at $179.99. A “short time” after, he noticed the joystick had started to drift.

Drifting Ain’t Easy

McFadden’s claim also states how he purchased a second Elite controller. However, the same issue arose “three or four months” later. McFadden also added how he spent “a considerable amount of time” attempting to fix the problems himself.

The lawsuit notes how Microsoft is “fully aware of the drifting defect after numerous online complaints [were] received from its customers”. Microsoft is also alleged to have “failed to disclose the defect and routinely refuses to repair the controllers without charge when the defect manifests”.

According to the lawsuit, the Xbox controllers feature a design flaw within the potentiometer. This is the mechanism that helps translate real-world, physical movement into digital movement in-game. (In laymen’s terms; you move the thumbstick, your character moves).

McFadden also claims that these experiences have dated back to “at least 2014”.

Whilst no action has been met (as of time of press, at any rate), this is not exactly great publicity for Microsoft. With the Xbox Series X mere days away from having the latest reveal, Microsoft would be best to squander this at their earliest convenience. We’ll see how this plays out.

Let us know if you’ve ever experienced any drift issues with your Xbox controllers (or, indeed, any controller for that matter).


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