Daily Archives: December 27, 2009

Why I’m Done With XBox

I know this has little or nothing to do with sports, but I need to vent and this is my forum. Over the last 10 years, I’ve been an avid XBox user and supporter. When all my playstation friends questioned my allegiance, I had no reasons to back it up. I just liked it better. But today, I’m officially retiring from the XBox world. It’s obvious that they don’t care, but perhaps you will, as you’re probably in the same boat if you’ve ever owned an XBox. There’s definitely no shortage of bad press out there along these same lines, however if anyone can manipulate the search results to make those harder to find, it’s Microsoft. I’d even go so far as to guess that Google does it for them. Anyway, here’s the series of events that lead up to my resolution.

  1. One year after purchase, my console stops working and the working green lights are replaced with scary red ones. I go online for some support, and the message is basically “The red lights are inevitable. Without fail (for lack of a better word) the console breaks after a given time. Fortunately, it was still under warranty, so I got it “repaired” free of charge. Although, I had to wait a few weeks to get my “new” console returned.
  2. Upon signing up for XBox Live, I’m offered a free month of Netflix service. However, within 2 weeks, I’m charged for the first month of service. Oddly enough, the more I deal with XBox support, the less I blame Netflix for this misleading offer.
  3. I sign up for a 1 month XBox Live membership with the card I received to make up for the repair I needed. After a couple weeks, I’m impressed with the service and purchase a 3 month subscription. It says it will just add on to the end of my current subscription. Instead, my new expiration date is exactly three months from the date I redeemed my new card, as opposed to the final date of my existing membership. I really wanted to continue with my service, but I wanted to make sure I got those extra two weeks back that I paid for. I called support, explained that I fully intended on extending my membership, but wanted to get those two weeks back first. The dickhead on the phone said he wanted to explain why it was like that but insisted on my answering ONE specific security question. He asked me what my grandfather’s occupation is. I explained to him that my grandfather died when I was six, and I had no idea what he does for work in the afterlife, therefore, there is no way I would’ve chosen a response to that question. I told him I’d be happy to provide any other information about my account. You know, relevant stuff. He stuck to his guns, insisting on me telling him what my deceased grandfather does for a “living.” Trying to get passed this nonsense, I tried to tell him I simply wanted to extend my membership, but wanted those two weeks back before I could continue with my service. He didn’t budge, and was happy letting me hang up the line even after I told him this had discouraged me from continuing with the service. I guess they lost that sale right?
  4. WRONG. A couple weeks later I noticed my credit card had been charged for another month of service. What’s odd is I never used my credit card for Live service. I was using prepaid cards. The only thing I used my credit card for was to purchase Points. Somehow they used that information and enrolled me in automatic payments. When I called, they told me to sign into my XBox Live account and it shows where automatic payments were set up. That’s great and all, but I never did that. They refused to reverse the charges, so I had to resort to my bank. What’s worse is the guy never took to the time to show me where I could cancel automatic payments – something I had to discover on my own after they charged me again for two more months.
  5. Couple weeks later, my console stops displaying on my TV screen. I do everything listed in the customer support section to no avail. I’m basically told I have a faulty A/V cable and need a new one. A/V Cable = $40
  6. Fast forward to today. I plug in my new A/V Cable and I have sound! But, no picture. I try it on my other TV and get nothing. Since I have a brand new cable, I go back to the support page and try everything they suggest. When that doesn’t work, I call tech support. Dickhead #2 wastes 10 minutes asking me questions like “is my tv turned on” and “are the components plugged in.” Now, trust me, as much as I wanted to be a dick, I understood that they had to ask these questions first, so I complied. Ultimately he told me I’d have to pay another $100 – $120 if I wanted to request the repair over the phone with him – and send it in yet again, and wait another month or so to get it back. I expressed my frustration with the ongoing issues and told him this was pretty much the last straw. I’d blindly supported XBox for 10 years but I just didn’t feel like I was getting anything in return. I was blown away by the complete disregard for customer retention. He let me walk.

In conclusion, XBox has taken over the number one spot on my shitlist right above Comcast. I’m going to make one last ditch effort to take apart my console to see if I can make it work. When that fails, I’m going to take my old friend out on the balcony and liberate myself by sending crashing violently to the ground. I plan to capture it on video as well. I’ll post it here if and when it comes to that. Anyone else have some ridiculous experiences with XBox they’d like to share?