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Saturday, November 26, 2005

Isolated Hardware Glitches Mar Xbox 360 Launch

Isolated Hardware Glitches Mar Xbox 360 Launch

"Microsoft on Wednesday acknowledged that it has received some complaints from customers about technical problems with its recently launched Xbox 360 game console. The news comes at a tough time for the company, which had been hoping to dominate the next generation video game market by releasing Xbox 360 well ahead of the competition.

"It's a few reports of consoles here and there not working properly," said Microsoft spokesperson Molly O'Donnell told CNN this week. "It's what you would expect with a consumer electronics instrument of this complexity." The problems include systems that spontaneously shut down or crash to a multi-language error screen. Early indications are that the problems are all related to the power supply overheating.

Though reports of these problems still seem to represent just a small fraction of Xbox 360 consoles sold so far--all Xbox 360 retail units sold out within minutes of the product's initial availability on Tuesday--it's unclear how many systems are affected. Many Xbox 360 sales, for example, will likely sit in boxes until Christmas. In my extensive use of Xbox 360 over the past few weeks, I have not experienced any problems related to overheating or the power supply.

For customers with problems, however, there is little they can do locally. Since Xbox 360 is in such short supply, and will be until after the holidays, they cannot exchange the units at local retail stores. Xbox 360 customers who do experience problems should contact Microsoft at 1-800-4MY-XBOX or visit the Xbox 360 Web site ( for a fix or exchange. Microsoft says it will arrange for overnight delivery of flawed units to a repair center." [more]

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