Users Are Reporting Air Bubbles Under Steam Deck Displays

Oh no, not again!

Steam Deck air bubbles under the screen
Source: Reddit

Steam Deck is a well-executed Valve project that helped the company and the Linux community. More importantly, Steam Deck sales also helped lift Nintendo’s handheld console monopoly as people now get to choose between two handheld consoles, and most are considering buying the Deck.

Apart from stepping into some of the Asian markets, Valve also recently ramped up the production of Steam Deck. Due to this, many people who were supposed to receive their confirmation emails in Q4 are receiving them in Q3. While that’s excellent news for Steam Deck wanters, some people are reporting QC issues in the form of what looks like air bubbles under the displays. But what exactly is the issue here?

Bubbles Under Steam Deck display: QC issues?

A couple of users on Reddit have posted that their recently-unboxed units (Both 512GB and Etched Glass) have air bubbles under the display. User u/darkweaver66 posted a picture where giant bubbles that look like the ones that are likely to appear while applying screen protectors are clearly visible. However, were yet to see this issue on the 256 GB and 64 GB variants.

User u/DuneSpoon also posted an image of his unit with a similar issue. In reply, user u/NickMotionless says that the LCDs used in the Steam Decks are “Laminated Displays.” This means the LCD is adhered to the digitizer using an adhesive (LOCA – Liquid Optically Clear Adhesive) that’s usually cured under UV light.

People believe that due to the production ramp-up, most units aren’t being given enough time to cure under UV light. The solution is massaging the displays to remove the bubbles by exerting pressure and curing them under a UV light or filing an RMA and requesting Valve for a replacement.

Other fixes include rubbing on display with a lint-free cloth and 99% Isopropyl Alcohol or even using Wine and Vinegar to get rid of the bubbles. However, we’d suggest returning the unit and getting a replacement without causing further harm to the device.

If you’ve made up your mind about buying a Steam Deck but haven’t decided which storage variant to choose, we’ve got you covered.

Abubakar Mohammed

Abubakar Mohammed

Abubakar is a Linux and Tech Writer. Hailing from a Computer Science background, the start of his love for Tech dates back to 2011, when he was gifted a Dell Inspiron 5100. When he's not covering Tech, you'll find him binge-watching anime and Tech content on YouTube or hunting heads in competitive FPS games. You can also find his work on Android Police and How-To Geek.
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