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Bill Gates Hates Me

November 9th, 2007

So you’d think after all the grief I give J and Dina over Steve Jobs and his iCult that Bill Gates would think I was the bees knees. Nope. Let’s talk about Halo friend. After a long and painful wait for my copy to arrive, I get to play it all of 3 times before I get the red ring of death. That’s right, my Xbox is now an Xdoorstop. This brings the failure rate of Xbox 360s among full time Audioholics staff to 66.6% (oh yes, the number of the beast and not coincidentally the combination on Bill Gates’ luggage). Gene’s died a while ago (took them around 2 weeks to get it back to him from the time he shipped it off) though they said it might be more like 4 weeks+ for me. Here’s how it goes:

  1. You get the red ring of death.
  2. You call 1.800.4my.xbox
  3. A friendly person tells you they you never registered your machine (and does it for you)
  4. They ask you to plug it back in and confirm that the red ring still exists
  5. They say, “OK, well we’ll ship you a box for you to ship your Xbox in (which will take about 3-4 days to get to you). Once we receive your Xbox, it could take up to four weeks for us to fix it and ship it out.”

Like I said, it only took Gene 2 weeks to get it back but I’m expecting not to have it back before Christmas so anything sooner than that would be a plus. Honestly, the lady on the phone was pretty polite and respectful and didn’t give me a bunch of grief. Once I plugged it in and confirmed that it was still dead she put me on hold and took care of the whole thing. I didn’t have to do anything but provide my address.

Of course, it’s kinda funny to think that Microsoft is taking a bath on these consoles. I can’t imagine that the residuals they are making on the software (even with games as popular as Halo 3 and Gears of War) is in any way covering their expenses at this point. But they are definitely doing the right thing by repairing units and getting them back in the home. Because if they don’t, and the users switch to the Playstation or Wii, they’ve lost that revenue stream forever.

Once that 360 is in someone’s home, they are inevitably going to buy some games for it. Regardless if they only play FPS like Halo 3 or sports/driving/platformer games, they will purchase. And that is where the money is for both Microsoft and the game developers. Right now they may be taking it in the ass over these broken down consoles but in the end they will probably be well in the black.

The big problem that I foresee, however, is the delay of the next iteration of Xbox. These console repairs are eating into profits which could dissuade MS from putting out a new Xbox until they recoup some of their money. It’s a hard sell to stockholders to start phasing out a product just when it gets profitable. While this may not be the death knell for the next Xbox, you never know with the gaming community. If the next Playstation or Nintendo or (God forbid) Apple gaming console comes out first and grabs a huge chunk of the market, Microsoft’s days in the console market may be numbered.

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  1. majorloser
    November 11th, 2007 at 17:50 | #1

    Kharma dude, just freakin’ kharma!

    Blame it on the long wait Gene made you go through for Halo 3.

  2. November 12th, 2007 at 10:54 | #2

    Dude, you killed your 360 on purpose, didn’t you! You didn’t want me “spankin’ you like a little girl” in Halo 3 any more!! Your words, not mine… *grin*

  3. ky22
    November 13th, 2007 at 14:11 | #3

    Don’t worry everyone’s 360 has RROD. Just as everyone’s PC has BSOD it’s a fact of life. They are both products of M$

  4. November 16th, 2007 at 15:42 | #4

    It’s sad that we think that way. Think of how crazy people would go if their toaster’s occasionally stopped working and you’d have to unplug them, plug them back in, shake them a few timed, clean the crumb tray, dance a little jig, unplug it, plug it back in, and pray. No one would buy that toaster. And yet here we are with PCs and Xboxs. Boy, I feel dumb!

  5. November 28th, 2007 at 17:38 | #5

    My Nintento Wii is dying. It isn’t just Microsoft junk. It’s everything with a computer program and rushed to market hardware. And I just picked up a Wii game for Christmas. Dang, I hope I can get it exchanged. I have only had it for 2 months and it’s dying!! ARGHH!

  6. November 28th, 2007 at 21:50 | #6

    Looks like Gene was right on. I got my xbox back exactly 2 weeks from the day I sent it off. I’ll be hooking it up tonight if I get a chance. Of course the day it comes in I get a speaker system and a display so it may have to wait for a while… naw!

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