A statement from Nintendo to IGN clarifies everything that has happened:
“Earlier this week, individuals claimed to prematurely purchase a small number of Nintendo Switch systems from an unspecified retailer. Nintendo has determined these units were stolen in an isolated incident by employees of a U.S. distributor, with one system being illegally resold. The individuals involved have been identified, terminated from their place of employment and are under investigation by local law enforcement authorities on criminal charges.”
A few days ago Reddit user, hiphoptherobot, got their hands on a Nintendo Switch two weeks early. The original story was that he’d gotten it shipped to him early by a kept secret retailer. The user said that he didn’t want to get the retailer in trouble. Upon getting one he posted a video of the UI in action for the first time and unboxed the Switch as well. Check out our overview on the UI down below:
Flash forward two days and the story took a quick pivot to Nintendo getting into contact with him and had him mail the console back to them. Following this he also removed the video showing off the UI, so he wouldn’t get into much trouble.
Later on in the NeoGaf thread hiphoptherobot said the following “For the sake of clarification I will say that I don’t think the person I got it from knew and therefore I certainly didn’t know but somewhere down the chain some switches had “mysteriously disappeared”. So while it was unknown to me, once I found out that it had probably been stolen I did’t feel comfortable keeping it.”
So it looks like the user unknowingly purchased a stolen Switch from someone. He says he did not get a refund for the system which is quite unfortunate but at least we now know what the UI looks like, hiphoptherobot is the martyr we all do not deserve.