Nintendo Europe are now offering free Joy-Con repairs if they’re experiencing “drift” issues. This new policy applies to all countries within the European Economic Area (EEA), UK and Switzerland. These repairs will also apply if the controllers are outside of the warranty.
Nintendo posted an update on their European website where users can book a repair if necessary. The page also offers suggestions on methods to try before sending them in to be fixed. The site also notes that the repairs only apply specifically to what they call responsiveness syndrome, known to most players as “drift.” It does not apply to Joy-Cons broken in other ways.
While Nintendo’s free Joy-Con repair policy has already been in place in France and Belgium, this is the first time the policy has been rolled out across the whole region.
The change in policy follows calls from consumer advocacy groups within Europe around the widespread issue with Joy-Cons. In 2021, the European consumer group BEUC called on the EU Commission to launch an investigation into the issue, which they have continued to raise as an issue as recently as July 2022.
In June 2022, UK consumer advocacy group Which? found that 40% of UK Switch owners had experience Joy-Con issues. Their subsequent investigation in December 2022 determined there was a mechanical fault with the Joy-Cons that Nintendo had to address.
A similar policy change was previously made in North America after class action lawsuits in both the US and Canada.