Battle With Microsoft II: Big Business Makes Little Guy Eat It

Posted: September 11, 2008 in Video Games

As I sat down on the couch tonight I was taken by the mood to spend some quality time with my Xbox 360. After inserting my Bioshock disc I was surprised to see that the console was unable to read the disc and displayed an error message stating so, which is what alerted me to the problem.  I tried a number of different games, movies, CD’s, etc, none of which where readable by my 360’s CD reader.  I did a quick search online to find that the “unplayable disc” error is nearly as common as the Red Rings of Death.  With that knowledge in hand I proceeded to contact Xbox Customer Support.  The first Representative I spoke with had an accent so thick it literally took me five minutes to realize and understand that he was asking for my zip code.  At that point my frustration and blood pressure had risen to a point that i felt was unhealthy so I asked this gentleman if there was someone with an American or British accent that I could speak with and explained that I simply could not understand him well enough to resolve my issue.  At this point he became upset with me and asked me to remain professional.  Additionally he stated “you’ll have to disconnect and call back if you want to speak with someone else.”  Now mind you other Xbox Support Reps have transferred me to another rep or back into the queue when I have requested they do so but this gentlemen became belligerent to the point where I lost my temper and told him “I am being professional but you’re acting like a true Fuck Face.  Don’t lie to me I know I can be transferred”  He tried to accuse me of some form of racism as if being unable to understand ones English and kindly asking to speak with someone else makes one racist. At any rate I ended up speaking with a Supervisor.  Needless to say the call did not end well and though the Supervisor was professional and polite I was infuriated by calls end.  Getting to the point I ended up filling a second complaint against Microsoft because they refuse to repair my Xbox 360 free of charge and are asking I pay one hundred dollars for the repair.  The details of the call and issue are below in my email to the Better Business Bureau.  While I expect Microsoft to shun both of the requests I made in my complaint to the BBB I felt filing a complaint against them was the right thing to do.

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My Claim

I am the owner of an Xbox 360 who purchased his console in November 2005. The console performed as it was meant to until the spring of 2008. At that time my Xbox 360 experienced a hardware failure which resulted in the “Red Rings of Death”. I contacted Xbox customer support and was offered free repairs as my console was under the extended warranty that Microsoft had given to owners of 360’s. The repair went smoothly and when my console was returned to me all seemed to work as it should. As of this evening September 10th, 2008 my Xbox 360 experienced a second hardware failure.

In this latest instance the failure deals with the CD drive. I followed all of Microsoft’s troubleshooting tips though none of them helped to alleviate the problem. I then called Xbox support and spoke with a Supervisor named Kim. I explained that my consoles CD reader was no longer reading any type of disc and that I needed further assistance.

Kim explained that I would need to send my Xbox 360 in for repairs for the second time in just under six months. While I had no objections to sending my console back to Microsoft for repairs she indicated that the repair would cost $100.00 which would cover the shipping to and from their headquarters, the actual repair, and would give me an additional years warranty.

I asked Kim if there was anyone with whom I might speak who possessed the authority to waive that fee as by Microsoft’s own admission, a certain percentage of Xbox 360’s left the factory defective and the hardware malfunction was no fault of mine. Kim explained that she understood how I felt but that she had no supervisor to whom I could speak and that no one above her would hear my argument.

Proposed Resolution

As Microsoft has admitted to the many problems plaguing their latest console I believe my Xbox 360 as well as all others should be repaired free of charge through the entire life cycle of the console. As I have sent it to them for repairs once already, this further proves that the malfunction is occurring due to poor manufacturing and rushed production. One only needs to do a quick Google search to see just how many Xbox 360 owners are having the same problems that I am mired by. It is my firm belief that warranty or no, a company should be required to repair any product that malfunctions due to their own hurried or inept production. I believe this to be even truer when the company has admitted to the problems. Aside from my Xbox 360 I have never owned a console that has needed any repair, even those that I still use 20 years later.

I would ask that Microsoft repair my console free of charge as its malfunction has occurred due to their faulty hardware. This console is only one month outside of its extended warranty and is less than three years old (half way through its life cycle). I paid over $400.00 for my Xbox 360 and now the manufacturer, who has acknowledged the problem, is going to ask a faithful customer to pay another $100.00 to fix something that they are responsible for? If Microsoft will not repair my console free of charge I would ask that a Microsoft Executive contact me via telephone to explain the ethics and morals of such fees and business practices.

Comments
  1. Jennifer says:

    Thanks for all the info; we were thinking of getting one but FORGET IT! We like companies that TAKE CARE of the clients; not SH#T on them!! Good Luck!!!!!!!!

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