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Unhappy Xbox player files lawsuit against Microsoft for "stick drift" claims

Plaintiff believes Microsoft “failed to disclose the defect".

Microsoft has been hit with a class-action lawsuit that claims it's Xbox One controllers - like Nintendo's Joy-Cons - suffer from "stick drift".

As reported by VGC, the class-action complaint - which was filed on 28th April in Washington by Donald McFadden - maintains that customers paying to repair their controllers after the 90-day warranty expires are allegedly paying to repair a known fault.

McFadden alleges that his Xbox Elite controller - which retails for $180/£160 - demonstrated "drift" within a "short time", as did his replacement controller "three or four months later". In some cases, it's alleged controller movements are even registered when the sticks are stationary and no-one is touching them.

Faulty potentiometers - "the mechanism that translates the physical movement of the thumbstick into movement within a game" - are reported to have a "design flaw" as VGC reports "the wiper component of the potentiometer scrapes resistive material off a curved track, resulting in unwanted electrical contact without input from the user".

In documents seen by the outlet, the plaintiff claims he spent "a considerable amount of time" attempting to fix the defect on his own, and now believes that in light of the numerous complaints, Microsoft has "failed to disclose the defect and routinely refuses to repair the controllers without charge when the defect manifests".

"A simple Google search on this issue reveals multiple forum and message boards dedicated to stick drift; YouTube instructional videos of users attempting to fix the issue on their own; and even replacement joystick components from Amazon and other sellers," the filing states.

US lawyers filed a similar class-action lawsuit against Nintendo after concerns around the issue of Joy-Con drift last July, and further plaintiffs were added in September following similar complaints about the new Nintendo Switch Lite consoles, too.

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About the Author
Vikki Blake avatar

Vikki Blake


When​ ​her friends​ ​were falling in love with soap stars, Vikki was falling in love with​ ​video games. She's a survival horror survivalist​ ​with a penchant for​ ​Yorkshire Tea, men dressed up as doctors and sweary words. She struggles to juggle a fair-to-middling Destiny/Halo addiction​ ​and her kill/death ratio is terrible.

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