Specialist refuses to repair 360s

Written by Joe Martin

June 29, 2007 | 10:24

Tags: #360 #bill #death #gamesindustry #gates #micromart #red-ring #repair

Companies: #microsoft

The news isn't good for Xbox fans today. Micromart, a UK-based repairs specialist, has told GamesIndustry.biz that they will no longer be repairing Xbox 360s, due largely to being swamped by faulty consoles the inability to repair the console to a satisfactory level.

"We were seeing about 30 a week before we pulled the plug on the service. We saw it over a period of several months and it was just getting worse. It began towards the end of last year. Once the twelve month warranty finished then we started to see more and more machines being sent in to be looked at." Said Jeff Croft of Micromart.

So, just why are so many Xbox 360s being returned for repairs? Jeff has his theories;

"The work we had done to the console lead us to believe that basically it was a fault with the motherboard and not something that could be resolved easily. And it wasn't going to go away.

"Rather than lead customers up the garden path we'd walk away from it and tell them to go directly to Microsoft because they have the facility to replace the motherboard. If Microsoft has updated the motherboard for the new consoles that it's producing then presumably they've improved the existing model."

Despite writing to Microsoft about the problems, Micromart received no reply and ultimately had to retract the 360 repair service. Some estimate that the failure rate on the Xbox 360 is as high as 30 percent.

"We're not taking that thing on board; we won't repair them. We originally did some work with it but it's labour intensive and it isn't really a feasible repair for us to undertake. We would probably end up charging GBP 100 for a repair and we still wouldn't be happy with the end result," Jeff added, for those that still hadn't quite got the point.

Microsoft has faced massive amounts of criticism over the failure rate of the Xbox 360 and has attempted to secretly address the issue by adding an extra heatsink into faulty systems as the 'red ring of death' problem is commonly thought to be the result of a heating problem. It's still too early to tell if the new hardware is having an effect on the reliability of the console though.

Ever bricked a 360, or do you think it's only as useful as a paperweight/radiator anyway? Let us know what you think.
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