The DualSense Edge PlayStation 5 controller is the most expensive first-party controller available for the current generation of games consoles, coming in at a recommended retail price of $199.99. I need to return mine less than a year after purchase because the surface of the controller’s rubber grips are bubbling up and peeling off like a banana skin.
It’s not just me: other apparent DualSense Edge owners have posted photos on social media of their own controllers doing much the same thing.
The news hints at a much deeper manufacturing issue with the Sony-produced controller, with some of the people posting about the grips online saying the issue appeared after normal use of the controller. That certainly applies in my case, too. Games consoles and their peripherals sometimes have issues that result in a mass of returns or even class action lawsuits, as was the case with the Nintendo Switch’s Joy-Con drift problem, and the Xbox 360 “red ring of death.” This appears to be the first widely reported issue impacting Sony’s high-priced controller.
“The grip on my DualSense Edge is already starting to peel off after light use and is also yellowing from natural skin oils,” one person tweeted at an official PlayStation account in May, just four months after they appear to have purchased it. After they found other similar reports from affected users online, they wrote: “This is obviously a common issue with this controller and is not acceptable for the price we paid.”
“My PlayStation DualSense Edge controller’s rubber grip is starting to peel,” another person wrote in October, adding they’ve had the device since launch and use it nearly every day.
Others say they have “barely used” the controller, however. “I bought my DualSense Edge around March and noticed both sides of the rubber grip are bubbling and lifting,” another person wrote in May.
Sony appears to have replaced controllers of some DualSense Edge users. “Sent mine to Sony as the grip was peeling off and the trigger had started squeaking—they simply replaced it with a new one,” another user wrote in September.
The DualSense Edge itself is Sony’s answer to the increased demand for pro-controllers, which often come with additional buttons (especially back pedals that let a user perform more moves without taking their fingers off the joysticks) and triggers that click more similarly to a mouse for that millisecond advantage. For years Microsoft has offered the much lauded Xbox Elite Controller, which can go for around $120. Companies like Scuf have sold third-party alternatives, including their own take on a PS5 controller. Other vendors like eXtremeRate advertised back pedal adds-on that PS5 users could install themselves.
Then Sony launched the official DualSense Edge in January. The product received very positive reviews, but they did not appear to mention the controller’s grip issue, which may only emerge after ordinary use outside of a review timeline.
Sony did not respond to a request for comment when 404 Media sent a photo of the issue.