Steam Deck add-on Killswitch to be redesigned after 'million dollar' mistake

Project Killswitch case with magnetic kickstand.
(Image credit: dbrand)
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Gadget accessory maker Dbrand has temporarily suspended sales of its Project Killswitch (opens in new tab) Steam Deck case due to concerns over the case's magnetic kickstand.

In a Reddit post titled "Our Million-Dollar Mistake (opens in new tab)" (spotted by GamingOnLinux (opens in new tab)), Dbrand points to a recent report from The Verge (opens in new tab) which says that the magnetic kickstand reduces fan speeds on certain Steam Decks. 

Steam Decks contain fans from one of two possible producers, Delta or Huaying. The interference from the magnetic kickstand seems only affect the Delta fans, though the only way to find out is by opening up your Steam Deck. The company says it cracked open the Steam Decks it used for testing and found that they contained Huaying fans, which is why it didn't know about the problem until it received an email from The Verge. Killswitch owners who aren't sure which fan type their Steam Deck contains should avoid using the kickstand until replacements are sent out, Dbrand says. 

"This 11th-hour curveball is what prompted us to pull the public launch last night and suspend sales," wrote Dbrand. "We didn't want any more Killswitch orders to be placed until we had a plan in place to overcome this challenge."

The company plans to replace the magnetic mount with a mechanical interlock system that will be compatible with all of its accessories, but the revision is "expected to take some time."

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Every customer who ordered a magnetic Killswitch will get a free replacement, and Dbrand isn't requiring that customers ship back the magnetic version. The company jokes that owners should "keep it on your fridge as a memento of our failure."

If you have received a Killswitch from a private launch and want a refund, you can email Dbrand (opens in new tab) to start the refund process. Dbrand has also opened up orders for the updated Project Killswitch that will ship out in Q1 2023.

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Jorge Jimenez
Hardware writer, Human Pop-Tart

Jorge is a hardware writer from the enchanted lands of New Jersey. When he's not filling the office with the smell of Pop-Tarts, he's reviewing all sorts of gaming hardware from laptops with the latest mobile GPUs to gaming chairs with built-in back massagers. He's been covering games and tech for nearly ten years and has written for Dualshockers, WCCFtech, and Tom's Guide.