Alcohol has been a popular weapon among the masses in fighting against the coronavirus outbreak, but owners of the Nintendo Switch have been advised not to use it to disinfect their consoles.
There have been a variety of suggested ways to help curb the spread of COVID-19, including regularly washing hands and cleaning the gadgets that we hold. However, according to Nintendo, alcohol should not be used on the company’s hybrid console and its Joy-Cons.
“Recently, customers have been asking whether they can disinfect their Nintendo Switch consoles and Joy-Cons with alcohol,” Japan’s Nintendo Customer Service account on Twitter posted, according to a translation by Kotaku. “We’re very sorry to say please avoid using alcohol as it may cause the plastic parts to fade in color or deform.”
Nintendo, however, added that even cleaning methods without alcohol, such as disinfecting wipes, may still damage the console’s plastic parts depending on their ingredients.
The finish of the Nintendo Switch is very easy to rub off, and while the console will not show any apparent damage after just one time of cleaning with alcohol, multiple times may result in visible marks.
According to Nintendo, the recommended tool is a “soft dry cloth,” which may clean things such as dirt or fingerprints off of the console, but it will not disinfect the Nintendo Switch from any remnants of the new coronavirus.
The choice now for Nintendo Switch owners is whether to see some damage on their consoles but with the assurance that it is disinfected, or to keep their devices in pristine condition but with the increased risk of being infected with COVID-19 — which should be a no-brainer decision. Alternatively, just do not go outdoors, and if there is a need to, perhaps consider leaving the Nintendo Switch at home.
Cleaning the Nintendo Switch and other electronic gadgets should be done daily, as recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. According to a study by the Harvard Medical School, the coronavirus may survive up to two to three days on plastic and stainless steel, which is what makes up the exteriors of most electronic devices.
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