Posted by: mrpeatie | December 5, 2008

Hoping for Hardware Failure

I never thought I’d be in a position where I hope my beloved Xbox 360 overheats and dies on me. How did it come to this?

The inevitable RROD

The inevitable RROD

Microsoft’s Xbox 360 is a wonderful gaming console. It has fantastic games, superior online capabilities, and a diverse gaming community that all contribute to a blissful gaming experience. The only problem is that MS rushed the Xbox out the door trying to beat Sony’s Playstation 3 to market and the system has been plagued by hardware issues ever since. The dreaded Red Ring of Death has been the most prevalent and costly issue. What happens is the system overheats from poor ventilation and melts some  soldered connections crippling the system. The problem became so widespread that MS extended the normal 1-year warranty on all systems to 3-years, but only for the specific RROD problem costing them roughly (insert Dr. Evil voice) 1 billion dollars.

My Xbox started crapping out on me earlier this week. Everything on screen became saturated in a shade of green. It is one of the many early symptoms of the RROD. The problem is until I actually get the RROD, this issue isn’t covered under the extended 3-year warranty. If I were to send it in now, I’d have to pay a $99 repair fee. So essentially I am hoping that my system completely craps out and dies on me so I get the RROD and can send it in for free repairs.

The weird thing is that I’m not really that mad. I should be. Any consumer should be. Who would actually put up with owning something you know will eventually break before it should? I guess because the problem is so common that Xbox owners have come to expect it and thus have prepared for it. I knew it was just a matter of time, but now I have to wait for my gimped system to completely crap out. 

I decided to pay the fee and send it in. I’m doing it all online which has been an interesting study in customer support. I haven’t spoken to a single foreign customer service rep and I’ve been following my console’s status online. So far so good. Although I’m a bit weary how things will work once I get it back. I’m borrowing a friends backup Xbox at the moment which was also sent in and repaired. It is functional most of the time, but I get a disc read error on pretty much any gaming session over an hour.  

Another Update
My Xbox was returned to me over the holidays. Everything seems to be working properly. Have to say it was rather convenient doing it all online and I was impressed with how detailed the information available to me was on my repairs. It was nice not having to talk to anyone at MS throughout the entire process. 



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