Xbox One is being shipped to consumers and to retail stores with defective disc drives, according to a growing number of brand new owners of the video game system – many who waited in line for hours for the midnight launch of the game system Friday. Microsoft’s solution to the reported problem is to tell unhappy owners to call customer service. However, due to the high volume of callers complaining of defective disc drives, some gamers are reporting having to wait hours before being able to reach Microsoft customer service.
Those affected have described an unsettling grinding noise emitting from the drive when they try to insert a movie or a game, making the disc drives on the Xbox One, which double as Blu-Ray players, unable to read discs.
Microsoft has released an official statement regarding the faulty disc drives, assuring customers that they are working diligently to provide replacement consoles immediately, but the company has not released any sort of numbers that might indicate how widespread this problem is.
A Microsoft spokesperson was also quoted today as saying that “Customers have the option for us to send a replacement console right away without waiting until they have returned their old one. This means a customer only has to wait a matter of days, rather than weeks to get back up and running,” which is certainly good news for the excited buyer who rushed home to play their new XBox One only to discover that the disc drive was defective.
According to Microsoft, more than one million Xbox One systems were sold in under 24 hours during the launch of the console yesterday. The game units were sold in the United States as well as 12 other markets, which marked the biggest launch in the history of the Xbox. Also significant is the opportunity provided to economically revive the gaming system industry. The Xbox One is Microsoft’s first new console in seven years, and brings with it an entire market of Xbox accessories and games.
With the rise of low-cost and widely available games on phones and on social media, the game console industry is facing a test as it struggles to stay relevant. The Xbox One controller alone cost Microsoft approximately $100 million, which doesn’t include the cost of marketing, licensing, design and content development, making a large launch such as the Xbox One’s recent debut a hopeful sign.
Microsoft’s main competitor, Sony’s PlayStation 4, is set to debut on Friday. Never have two gaming systems this large been launched so closely together. These two consoles, plus the recent release of Rockstar’s GTA V, are poised to take full advantage of the holiday shopping season and will provide a much-needed boost for the industry as well.
After Friday morning’s debut of the Xbox One, the unit is sold out at the majority of retailers, but Microsoft is pledging to keep shipping the systems to retailers as quickly as possible. How many of those Xbox Ones have defective disc drives remains to be seen.
By Jennifer Pfalz