Razer patents mobile gamepad that definitely isn't a Nintendo Switch clone...

(Image credit: LetsGoDigital)

Looking for a fun, on-the-go gaming machine? Razer may have the gadget for you, with a new patent for a tablet gaming controller that sounds (and looks) an awful lot like the Nintendo Switch's Joy-Con controllers.

Taking the form of two slim, detachable controllers that attach to the side of a "mobile device", with four input buttons and a joystick on each one, there's more than a passing similarity to the Joy-Cons – which slide on and off the body of Nintendo's Switch console, depending on whether you're playing in handheld or docked mode (or just when leaning the Switch on its rear stand).

The patent describes Razer's controllers as being "mechanically secured" to the sides of a "mobile device", meaning we could see this either for a large smartphone or a small Windows tablet.

The patent was spotted by Dutch technology website Let'sGoDigital, and was published in early August after an application dated to March of this year.

Outpacing the competition

A placeholder image, or pretty much what we're getting?

A placeholder image, or pretty much what we're getting? (Image credit: LetsGoDigital)

We don't have finalized product images, of course, and we'd hope that Razer wouldn't take too liberally from the size and shape of the Nintendo Switch's Joy-Con controllers. There's also no word on a release date or branding for the device.

Anyway, Nintendo has been innovating enough on its own to not worry too much about competitors aping two-year-old designs. With a slimmed-down Nintendo Switch Lite console on the way, new controller accessories for Ring Fit Adventure, and the ongoing development of the cardboard Nintendo Labo series, there's plenty making Nintendo's gaming portfolio distinct from everything else on the market.

Henry St Leger

Henry is a freelance technology journalist, and former News & Features Editor for TechRadar, where he specialized in home entertainment gadgets such as TVs, projectors, soundbars, and smart speakers. Other bylines include Edge, T3, iMore, GamesRadar, NBC News, Healthline, and The Times.