The Analog Joystick used potentiometer technology previously used on consoles such as the Vectrex; instead of relying on binary eight-way switches, the controller can detect minute angular changes through the entire range of motion. The stick also features a thumb-operated digital hat switch on the right joystick, corresponding to the traditional D-pad, and used for instances when simple digital movements were necessary.
A compatibility mode for the Analog Joystick was included in the Dual Analog Controller, Sony's first analog revision of its original gamepad design.
PS1 games that support the PS1 Analog Joystick have an "Analog Joystick Compatible" icon on the back cover.
The Analog Joystick has a switch to select either Analog or Digital mode. When in the Digital mode, both sticks function as the gamepad on a regular PS1 controller. Older PS1 games that do not support the PS1 DualShock sticks can work with the Analog Joystick.