Nintendo Switch components have already made headlines this week as the console’s screen supplier is struggling financially. But it seems that the headache about parts is far from over for the Big N as the Nintendo Switch platform holder now faces a lawsuit about its Joy-Con controllers.
A product manufacturer named Gamevice has now filed a lawsuit against Nintendo, accusing the company of violating a patent that it filed in 2012 in relation to its Android-based tablet the Wikipad. Gamevice had come up with an idea for a tablet with detachable controllers and a device with a “flexible bridge section,” before releasing the Wikipad in 2013.
In the lawsuit, not only does Gamevice ask for damages from Nintendo but the company also asks for a ban to be put on console sales for the Switch. The company states that Nintendo “has caused, and is continuing to cause, damage and irreparable injury to Gamevice.” It should be noted that the Wikipad is no longer available for purchase, and therefore the Switch isn’t a direct competitor. However, Gamevice does still make game controllers for mobile devices and the company could make the case that Nintendo is harming its income by unlawfully using its ideas.
While neither Gamevice or Nintendo has released further comment on the lawsuit, fans of the console maker are already discussing whether the Nintendo Switch could really be banned from sale. The Switch is mobile and works with televisions, but Nintendo has been quite adamant that it is a home console first and a mobile device second. The Nintendo Switch battery life could be proof of this and allow the company to establish a key difference between its hardware and Gamevice’s.
If Gamevice’s lawsuit is successful, though, then it might not spell the end of the Nintendo Switch altogether. Even if Nintendo was unable to sell the current design of the console, or its Joy-Con accessories, it’s reasonable to think that a redesign would be a solution.
It’s true that many enjoy the way the Joy-Cons work and the “click” of putting the controllers in place has also been prominent in trailers for Switch games, but they aren’t necessarily a key selling point. Many may be satisfied with a console that they can use at home and on the go, even if they have to sacrifice the detachable accessories, but Nintendo will be hoping that it doesn’t have to go down that route.
The Nintendo Switch is available now.