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A recently discovered Joy-Con patent gives possible glimpse at the future of the Nintendo Switch

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(Image credit: Nintendo)

A recently-approved Nintendo Switch Joy-Con patent may give fans an idea of the future of the console and its controller. 

As found on USPTO (opens in new tab), and shared by YouTuber Nintendo Academy (opens in new tab), this version of the Joy-Con features a classic D-Pad as found on the Nintendo Switch Lite, 3DS, and several other older Nintendo consoles. Not only this but according to the patent, this controller also features a Circle Pad which can also be found on the 3DS consoles. 

Nintendo Switch Joy-Con Patent

(Image credit: Nintendo)

The patent was originally filed in 2018, but was only approved in March of this year. This discovery has a number of fans theorising that it could be an upcoming controller design for the highly rumoured Nintendo Switch Pro. This revamped version of the console is supposedly due for release later this year and, according to a recent report by Bloomberg (opens in new tab), may feature an Nvidia chip for 4K upscaling.

What’s making this theory slightly less believable, however, is that the patent was filed in 2018, only a year after the original Nintendo Switch was released. Another widely recognised theory is that the new Joy-Cons may be a response to the Joy-Con drift issue that many Nintendo Switch owners have been facing since the console’s release. 

Like several other Nintendo Switch Joy-Con patents though, this could end up never seeing the light of day. However, It’s still fun to imagine how we’d play the likes of Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, Animal Crossing: New Horizons, and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate with this new, and possibly better controller. 

If you’re currently struggling with Joy-Con drift on your Nintendo Switch, take a look at our Joy-Con drift fix guide.

After studying Film Studies and Creative Writing at University, I was lucky enough to land a job as an intern at Player Two PR where I helped to release a number of indie titles. I then got even luckier when I became GamesRadar's trainee news writer where I get to spread the word about the goings-on in the video game world. My expertise lies in Animal Crossing related topics after spending the last 15 years immersing myself in island life. I also know a thing or two about The Last of Us, and way too much about the Kingdom Hearts series.