Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Don't buy a Microsoft Xbox 360 EVER!!!

I can't believe what an expensive hunk of junk my son's Xbox 360 is! While using it this afternoon, POOF the picture suddenly turns a funny color. We tried hooking it up to a different TV, a friend's TV, and even tried a friend's A/V cable, and now there's NO video or audio signal at all!

I called Microsoft's repair service number, and while on hold for a half hour (at least), I googled the symptoms. Low and behold, there are a number of Xbox users reporting the EXACT SAME PROBLEM! Read the article (and comments) for yourself on the Engadget website: http://www.engadget.com/2007/06/24/xbox-360-owners-reporting-blank-video-output-issue/#comments

And when I finally got through to Microsoft, I learned that this issue is not covered under warranty. Well, it would be if it were less than a year old, but of course my son's console is about a month or two past that milestone. So, I can either ante up another 100 bucks, or have a really nice $500 (or was it $600) door stop/paperweight. My son had saved birthday and Christmas money, and had originally wanted a PS3, but if you'll recall Sony was VERY late in getting that console to market. He finally caved in and bought the 360.

I expressed my frustration to the Microsoft rep, and I asked for another name, email address, or phone number to contact and complain to someone higher up the "food chain." He could not provide me with any, unfortunately.

Had this been an isolated incident, I would not feel so ripped off. However, Microsoft has had previous large scale problems with the 360, so much so it extend the warranty to 3 years for any console that displayed 3 blinking red lights. Read this article: http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/businesstechnology/2003776998_xbox06.html
Another article claims this will cost Microsoft about a billion dollars!

My point to the Microsoft rep is that failing to address this latest issue will cost Microsoft MUCH more than if they just bite the bullet and pay for the repairs: lost game revenue, online subscriptions, accessories, and all the other stuff that makes up this multi billion dollar gaming industry will find it's way to Sony's revenue stream.

Other frustrated 360 users have said that only a class action lawsuit will get Bill Gates attention. I'm trying the grass roots approach. If I and all the others who feel ripped off tell everyone they know of their experience, and tell others to buy a PS3 NOT an Xbox, I will feel somewhat vindicated if we make even a small dent in Microsoft's cash flow. This is not a simple video game or toy, it's a $600 COMPUTER (not including games and accessories)! It should last for more than a year, and there should not be such widespread problems that are simply ignored by the manufacturer.

Forgive my rant, but my son truly feels ripped off! And so do hundreds or even thousands of other Xbox users.

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