The Switch is getting bricked by third party docks
If you have a third party Nintendo Switch dock, you may want to avoid using it for a little while. Reports are doing the rounds that the latest firmware is causing non-Nintendo accessories to damage people’s machines, with Reddit users reporting charging problems, error messages and straightforward bricking.
Nintendo is reportedly repairing machines still under warranty, but with no mechanism for backing up saved games, the 100 or so hours you’ve put into Zelda: Breath of the Wild could very easily go up in smoke.
Given the Switch comes with a dock in the box, you may wonder why people would risk using a third-party version anyway. Whether it comes down to convenience (“I want a dock for upstairs”) or necessity (“my original dock doesn’t work”), the reasons are often the same: the official Nintendo product is surprisingly expensive, going for £80 on the Nintendo store. Some third-party docks also offer more functionality, letting you look at the screen while it charges, in the case of the Nyko dock.
Nyko seems to be one of the manufacturers affected, telling Kotaku in a statement: “we believe it is related to the way the Switch handles AV output for an external TV/monitor while the console is docked on the Portable Docking Kit.” The Nyko dock page on Amazon is flooded with people warning others not to use it, and sharing their own horror stories, though docks from FastSnail and Insignia are also said to have upset the Switch in recent weeks.
While Nintendo has not responded directly to the reports, the company did take the opportunity to remind its fans that third-party devices are used at their own risk. “Unlicensed products and accessories do not undergo Nintendo’s testing and evaluation process,” the company said. “They might not work at all with our game systems, and they could have compatibility problems with certain games, the Nintendo Switch system itself, and other licensed accessories and peripherals.”
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