BBC’s Watchdog scrutinises Xbox 360

Watchdog claims to have received over 250 complaints about Xbox 360’s breaking down shortly after the expiration of the 12-month warranty period.

While Microsoft in the US has pledged to replace all Xbox 360 consoles manufactured before January 2006 regardless of how long they have been owned, the UK division is asking customers to pay for faulty machines to be repaired.

A statement from the show’s producers claimed: “The Xbox 360 was a global phenomenon when it was launched in the UK in December 2005. The world's richest man and Microsoft boss Bill Gates called it the Ferrari of home entertainment. But we've had nearly 250 complaints from people who think it's more of a clapped-out old banger.

“Worse still, you've been telling us that some of the problems with your faulty Xbox 360 consoles occur when the one-year warranty has run out. That means you have to fork out to get it fixed.

“Alex Ainsow had no problems for a year. But, just after the warranty ran out, his Xbox 360 wouldn't stop crashing. He had to pay £85 for the repair. His second Xbox 360 lasted three days before it got the 'three red lights' – a hardware failure known in the gaming community as the 'ring of death'. Once you see them, the box can't be fixed.”

The reliability of the 360 has been an ongoing issue within the games community, with Microsoft continuing to insist that there are no systematic issues with the Xbox 360 hardware, despite the seemingly high number of faulty machines.

The Watchdog report was initially revealed on Gamesindustry.biz yesterday afternoon.

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