Why you do not buy game consoles during launch: Nintendo Switch comes out with defects


Image Source: Nintendo

Nintendo Switch, that new flagship console of long time toy and game company, Nintendo, has launched worldwide on March 3. Five days in we are starting to hear reports about Nintendo’s usual low quality control at work.

Nintendo was once known for the meme “Nintendium”, which was a fictional material said to be used by Nintendo for their handheld console, the original Gameboy, referring to the durability of that product, way back in 2006. Part of the joke was that Nintendo has depleted their source of Nintendium, which is why their following consoles were not as durable as the Gameboy.

And, indeed, the joke serves as a reminder how, though innovative Nintendo was over the years, they are cheap when choosing hardware or lazy at testing when it comes to their software. And again, with the coming of the Switch, it shows.

Titled “Nintendo Switch painful launch“, the video showed several problems users have encountered with the Switch. The video has gathered more than 50 sources, arranged by the similarity of the encountered problem.


Image Source: Youtube

One part of the video shows the Switch’s dock, which is basically all plastic and not much anything else inside it, and the fact that it can scratch the surface of the Switch’s screen. Another part shows the Switch freezing in some parts while the game, “Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild” is being played. There’s a part of the video showing how flimsy and how bad the design of the Switch’s controllers are. There’s some sync issues with the device’s controllers too.

People were also complaining about the frame rate of the game. While the game in handheld mode holds 30fps constantly, there has been reports that dock mode’s frame rate drops at times. While people who plan to play this on their TVs would see this as a problem, this is sort of a non-issue with those who are planning to play the games in handheld/tabletop mode.

But the biggest issue around concerns with the appearance of some dead pixels on the new consoles.

BBC reports: “Thousands of owners of Nintendo’s new console, Switch, have complained about dead or stuck pixels creating distracting and annoying dark squares on their screens.”


Youtuber, Monkeyspaz5000, showing a dead pixel in the middle of his device. Source: Youtube

Now dead pixels are pixels whose all three sub-pixels are permanently off, creating a pixel that’s entirely black. Based on ISO_13406-2, having a certain number of dead pixels on manufacturing flat panel displays, like an LCD or the Switch’s touchscreen, is normal and there’s a rule about how many dead pixels there must be before a screen is considered acceptable or is rejected entirely by the manufacturing company. But not all companies follow this and some does have zero-policy when it comes to dead pixels.

Anyway the complaint of a lot of customers was that Nintendo said such pixels were “normal and should not be considered a defect”. A lot of people over social media were disappointed by this statement by Nintendo, which seems to not want to take responsibility for the surprisingly low quality of the console.

But of course, those who had been long time fans of Nintendo wouldn’t have been surprised by these developments, given Nintendo’s history of poor choice of hardware, software and design on their products.

The Nintendo 3DS for example, the latest handheld console by Nintendo, has long been hacked by hackers who, starting out with using homebrew software on their devices, moving on towards to breaking the device’s infamous region-lock, has ended up pirating every single game released on the market. Many people are also appalled by how low the handheld’s specs were compared to its rival’s, the Sony PS VITA.

So it really was no wonder why investors were not all impressed during Nintendo’s presentation last time. Not only are they not impressed because they haven’t seen anything new but also because they knew of the company’s poor quality control and probably has anticipated this.

Anyway, its safe to say that buying one right now would be 50-50 suicide. It would be much better to wait until Nintendo feels like fixing these issues if you’re planning to buy one.