Microsoft extending 360 warranty to three years

[UPDATE 2] An apologetic software giant to replace any console suffering "red ring of death" for free worldwide; extension applies to every console sold since launch; company will take $1.05 billion charge.


Today, Microsoft announced that it is once again revamping its warranty scheme for the Xbox 360. After mounting anecdotal evidence of the system's failure rate due to the dreaded "red ring of death" (three flashing red lights on the console's front panel), the publisher is changing its warranty to cover systems affected by the red ring for three years from the date of purchase. Any console that suffers the aforementioned failure in any territory the 360 is sold can be returned to Microsoft for repair for free, because the warranty also includes shipping charges.

"As a result of what Microsoft views as an unacceptable number of repairs to Xbox 360 consoles, the company conducted extensive investigations into potential sources of general hardware failures," the company said in a statement. The three-year extension is for all 360s, and will be retroactively applied to every console bought since the 360 launched. That means anyone who bought a console in November 2005 will be covered until November 2008.

[UPDATE] Peter Moore, Corporate Vice President of the Entertainment and Devices Division of Microsoft Interactive Entertainment Business, said he is personally sorry about anyone who's suffered a 360 failure. "We haven't done right by our customers, and for that I apologize," he told GameSpot. "We listened, and we're going to make it right." In an in-depth interview with GameSpot, Moore outlined the new warranty, and emphasized it would be "global" in nature.

Moore also shot down point-blank unconfirmed reports that Forza Motorsport 2 was "bricking" consoles. "It's not a software issue, guys," he assured GameSpot. "It's a variety of hardware issues which we're taking steps to rectify." Though he declined to name any issue specifically, Moore said that Microsoft has improved the 360 hardware to help ensure that future batches of 360 hardware will not suffer similar issues.

Customers who have already paid for repairs that would be covered by the new policy will be reimbursed automatically, according to Microsoft. As a result of this new warranty extension, the publisher said it will report a $1.05 billion to $1.15 billion charge to its earnings for the quarter ended June 30, 2007.

From its November 2005 launch onward, Microsoft's Xbox 360 has been plagued by reports of malfunctioning consoles. While the company downplayed reports of faulty hardware for the better part of a year after launch, last September it acknowledged that its original batch of systems was failing at an unusually high rate. Microsoft extended the standard 90-day warranty to a full year, and promised to reimburse all those customers who had already been made to pay for repairs.

In April, the company once again tweaked its warranty service, saying it would no longer charge shipping on repaired Xbox 360 consoles, and would extend the warranty on those repairs.

The new warranty extension arrives atop a growing tide of reports of 360 hardware problems, including a Monday report quoting retailers as saying up to 33 percent of launch units fail. To help clarify the question of 360 hardware reliability, GameSpot conducted a week-long informal poll of its users, asking simply, "Has your Xbox 360 failed?"

Of the 49,934 respondents who said they owned a 360, 27,579 (55.2 percent) claimed to have had no problems at all. However, a startling 22,355 respondents--44.7 percent--claimed to have had at least one 360 fail. Some 13,858 respondents (27.8 percent) said they had one console die: of those, 10,012 (20.0 percent) said their console was replaced for free and 3,846 (7.7 percent) attested they had to pay. Others were even less lucky, with 3,619 (7.2 percent) saying they had suffered two dead 360s, and 4,878 (9.7 percent) reporting over two instances of hardware failure. (The initial percentages were slightly inaccurate--GameSpot regrets the error.)

The poll results are not definitive, and given the open nature of the poll's voting, its results could be manipulated. However, there is a wealth of anecdotal evidence pointing to a high 360 failure rate. Inside the GameSpot offices, 23 editors own 26 360s bought between November 2005 and January 2007. Eight have had their consoles fail completely at least once; of those, two editors suffering complete 360 failures on two occasions. Two others are experiencing ongoing problems, including USB port failure and intermittent cases of the "red ring." The remaining editors have encountered no hardware defects.

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Avatar image for MegaDeth859

Well, I'm a bit late on this post, but just like some people have abandoned their xbox 360s for ps3 due to failures, I abandoned my PS3 in favor of the xbox Halo Reach console after the yellow/red light of death. At least Microsoft admits that there's a problem. Sony will NOT accept that they have a defective product as well (YLOD and bad blu-ray players) and charges more for repairs ($150). So don't give up on Microsoft so easy... your PS3 WILL fail.

Avatar image for Jimminyfixit

Hi guys, I would like to make this statement clearer to all of those who have been fooled by Microsoft’s "extended warranty". Your Xbox 360 is only covered by the 3 year warranty if you are experiencing 3 lights on the red ring of light. If you experience any of the others then Microsoft turn their back on you. Here are the errors: *1 light in bottom right of RROL - Hardware failure and you are NOT covered under the 3 year warranty. I don’t know why, *2 lights on the left - Overheating issue and you are NOT covered under the 3 year warranty. They fail to think that if a fan breaks (which is a hardware failure) then you are most likely going to get this error first. Especially with a CPU chip running at over 100c. * All 4 lights indicate a video problem and are not covered by the 3 year extended warranty. Microsoft told me, and I quote, that "this is your problem" (quoted from supervisor Cimru from the Bangladesh telephone office). So basically guys if you receive any error other than 3 lights then you will have to pay £69 or $112 for a repair yourself. Be warned, I was put on hold for 30 minutes and then given to Cimru of (what sounds like) the Bangladesh call line with an attitude problem who thinks manners is a collective noun for a large home (yes, I know they are spelt differently). I’m still fighting this one. Please be warned as this is a huge disappointment. Cheers, Jimminy

Avatar image for loopyed

lol just got it yesterday ur not a true 360 gamer if u havnt experienced one

Avatar image for Gretzky1106

I got it twice (third one was 1 Red Ring). I was one of the first to get a free repair from Microsoft (they didn't charge me in all 3 of them.) The third one was eventually sent back after being fixed and is with me now.

Avatar image for ramram1993

my x360 shows no problem for now .... hope it continus like this

Avatar image for dgnr82cool

I got my 360 at launch day, Nov. 2005, and it worked every day, without fail until this past week (April 17), when I got the RROD. I can say that they responded to my call in approx. 4 mins, and the box to send in my 360 was at my door in 5 days, and sent it off. I have to say, that I have all three systems, but I have more games for my 360 than my wii and ps3 COMBINED. But I won't knock the ps3, it's a powerful system, and just needs more time. 360 is just the top system in terms of library and quality right now.

Avatar image for onwardtheindian

I enjoyed my 360 while it lasted but once i got the dreaded rrod after 8 months i went through 4 consoles in 3 months.The first one back lasted for a week, the next topped that by 2 days the 3rd tried it's best for a good month and the 4th got traded in the day it arrived back....add to this what amounted to 5 hours of phone calls to try and cancel my xbox live monthly account(after a lot of being hung up on and not getting called back they called me during christmas dinner???) i can safely say i've only bad things to say about microsoft and their product.....tis a sad state of affairs when the main reason i opted for a ps3 instead is because it works.

Avatar image for he-man-the-grea

well,i finally got my HD tv today after having a terrible tv for ages. And on this very day my xbox elite soon encounters the red ring of death.and the best part is i got it at christmas so ive had it for slightly over a month. I dont care how great and helpful microsoft are wen ure console breaks , at the end of the day ure console broke and that shuldnt happen. It shuldnt hav hit stores until they solved this fatal , widespread problem. Im not one bit pleased that im gonna hav to send it away for god knos how long (i live in the UK) and may very well find myself repeating this pattern over and over again. The only retribution i recieve is that they r losing money over this problem. I kno theres gonna b a bunch of fanboys raving on about how generous it is to offer repairs for free as opposed to being charged for it , yeh its great that microsoft r trying to take responsibility for their own stupid problems that they denied at first until the evidence built up so much that they had to acknowledge it. Good work microsoft cleaning up your own mess. UK ps3 may not hav backward compatibility ,but that now dosnt sound so bad considering the situation that i am in.

Avatar image for pathogenb

i'm on 360 #2 (first one was bought at launch) and PS3 #3. it happens.

Avatar image for Haeravon

I've had two 360's fail on me. First one ate discs, second one got RROD. MS replaced both free of charge. Now on my third one, I'm just waiting nervously for this one to kick the bucket.. eh.. I bought my first 360 in January 2006, it lasted two months. The second one lasted six months. I will say that the MS guys were actually really great, and I got both systems replaced within a month. So, at least they made it as easy as possible. The second guy had a funny accent that made him hard to understand though.. ah well.

Avatar image for nate1222

I'm buying a XBox360 in Feb. 2008. I'm a bit worried about the failure rate. I may find myself trading it in toward a PS3. Most of the games I like are on both consoles anyway. Price is the only major difference.

Avatar image for Goldenboy467

After almost 2 years of ownership, my console has begun experiencing intermittent cases of the red ring. Rebooting the hard drive seems to temporary fix the problem.

Avatar image for UnderRater

Ive had my 360 for a year and half no problems. best system ever! last week my console showed the 3 red rings and i was like crap, now ill have to wait 3-4 weeks and pay hundreds. i called the 1-800-4myxbox and they were great. called saturday....they shipped an empty box w shipping label on a new one that same week on friday. wow! great job microsoft!!!

Avatar image for joelt874

I bought the slimline ps2 on release and it seems virtually indestructible but I've only had a 360 a year and yet I'm on my 3rd 1 already, although this cost me no money it is still annoying.

Avatar image for planetkyle

The repair people were nice, and I got the unit back within 3 weeks or so. Also had a power adaptor go on me, but they shipped one to me in 5 days. Overall they have been extremely kind and considerate. The 65nm unit that is now being produced supposedly produces far less heat- perhaps cutting the faulty boxes down in the future...and yes, I know of a couple people with PS3 issues too. My 1st PS2 crapped out after 2 years and I received NO sympathy from Sony ( or free repairs, for that matter)

Avatar image for Wilstysabsinthe

I bought my Xbox 360 a little less than one year ago and it displayed the "red ring of death" a little over two weeks ago. It's on its way to the repair center now. I suppose the one downside to advanced hardware is hardware complications. That just comes with the territory and should be expected. That and an increase in graphics whores.

Avatar image for oli_kester

I got the ring of death today and ill have to wait 4 weeks for repairs

Avatar image for markevens

It seems that the 360 was rushed a little too fast to the market in order to beat out the PS3. While that certainly paid off in some respects, and Sony's mishandling of the PS3 has defiantly paid off for M$, over a billion in repair costs is a bit obscene, there goes all the Halo 3 profits.

Avatar image for wiidominance

thats why u xbox360 owners should get a wii, just in case of an ROD, u know.. to save it for rainy day ...

Avatar image for JasonQ87


Avatar image for ternet

I got the pleasure of seeing the ring of lights the day halo 3 came out, closest I've ever come to stepping in front of a bus

Avatar image for tominater1000

halo 3 comes out, ring of death comes on. Xbox repaired play halo 3 for 1 night, ring of death on again. WHAT THE HELL IS WITH THIS!

Avatar image for hornycorny69

i'm paranoid my 360's gonna choke in december 08. i lent it to a friend for most of this year, i got it back but the wireless controller doesn't hold battery for very long, like twenty minutes. hmm maybe i should ask him about it. but i'm sure he only used it for dvds..

Avatar image for Marine107

I had the rings of death hit me just last weekend, the horror of it all...I had Halo 3 reserved I was devastated. I was also able to fix my xbox for about a day by overheating in but then it went FUBAR and so I called xbox and though the representative was very nice I was sadly told that I will have to wait 3-4 weeks for my new I get to stare at my collecters edition halo 3 for a month...oh yay..

Avatar image for Djinnator

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

Avatar image for azafirster

Man i thought this was just a myth.

Avatar image for DaDude253

I was playing Sonic The Hedgehog then the screan froze and the power button got 3 red lights diden't think it was any thing serious came back 3 hours later nothing 5 hours later nothing than half an hour later i found about this on the net (This happend late june but scince then iv gotten my new one)

Avatar image for motofan87

I have never had to replace my PS2, and have had it since launch. No problems whatsoever. The 360 was only about 4 months old before it "red-ringed". Microsoft handled it very well, i only have to wait like a month to get it back. Still PS3 is too pricey for what is out now. Love the 360 when it works.

Avatar image for hobo290

Man thats weird, because I also have that problem, but only one red ring, any idea?

Avatar image for peecher23

Played Madden 08 and the next thing you know - 3 red lights. Second 360 of mine lost to the ring of death. At least this time Microsoft is solutioning the situation. I'm still bitter that I dropped $400 TWICE for a system that lasted less than 8 months. Third time a charm??? I have my doubts...who wouldn't?

Avatar image for xVietxBoi

I was very sure that my Xbox 360 would not fail, I've babied the console since the day I got it and its only a year old. I left it on overnight to finish the active downloads and it would shut off automatically, I even left the cooling fan stand on. This morning I played the Bioshock demo and it froze. Like any console there are always bound to be a freezing issue, no biggie I just restarted and let my brother play it. The console froze again, restarted it again and thats when heck broke loose. But I'm pleased that Microsoft is taking responsibilty for damages caused by its own hardware so it is not a consumer issue but their own issue.

Avatar image for WildbucingBill

Just put in Madden, played for about 3 minutes when..Boom...the 3 red lights of death. Turned it off, waited a few minutes, put in Pro Football ,after the intro, lock up and the 3 rings. Bought mine on launch day and never had a problem. No offense, here, but I always thought it was only a vocal few to bring forth the issue. After a lot of research, wow..If Microsoft didnt address this isssue, can you say class action lawsuit. Plus the black eye. I am now waiting for my return box. I hope they send me a new model with the hdmi. I have to dust off the PS3 and the Wii. Oh well.... Question..Does the 360 Elite have the same problem or is this new unit upgraded hardware? I asked the return guy and he said it was upgraded, but was a little veiled? Any comments on that?

Avatar image for ascendentjustic

less than 10 mins ago i got the ring of death. and how coincidental. i was reading this article, saying to myself, how lucky i am that my 360 hasn't malfunctioned. and whadaya know! my 360 died! But i hear that Microsoft will replace the 360 with a whole new console with the HDMI port. Is that true? and what's the cusomer service number?

Avatar image for snipeyrazz

Yea i called their customer service today, and even though i do not have a receipt even but a valid serial code (not register under someone else) which he registered for me and said all expenses will be paid, and that i will be receiving a box with instructions to send the 360 in with. just the bare 360 you keep the hard drive and cables and such. even the UPS delievery is free so im a happy camper. oh and as long as you have not "tampered" with the console by opening it or anything everything is covered.

Avatar image for LinkRemembered

I just got the Red Ring while playing Gears of War!! Damn it!

Avatar image for t5150

my 360 fraged and i sent it in to be fixed and thay sent me a new new new 360. not a referb. but a new one. that is the best thank you microsoft!

Avatar image for DJ_P_R_K

man i just git the dang 3 rings ( actually 2 rings) i think my 360 is retarted. lol i fixed it once by overheating it like it said to on youtube but like 2 days later it broke again i have 99 % of saints row done i need 1 more % omg i hope i still have all tha cuz if i have to start all over imma be mad!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! do you think i will have to start all over... and how do i sent it to microsoft helppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp please

Avatar image for flex2233

Sent my 360 for repair on 7/13/07 rec'd it back yesterday 7/30/07. Just a little over two weeks. Ran it for about 7 hours yesterday without any problems. Considering the massive recall, I think the service was really quick.

Avatar image for shadowsniper513

mouse, dude AARRGGHH!! mine just died! i was playin GHII this morning, everyting fine, i go downstairs for 20 min and Ring of death'd!! boo... ive had my 260 since march after launch

Avatar image for flex2233

I sent my 360 in for repair the week of the "extended warranty" announcement. It's been about 2 weeks now.....I'm wondering has anyone sent their 360 in and rec'd their console back yet?

Avatar image for Mouse77

Nooooo! I just got the ring of death! Dammit, and I was on the last level of the Darkness! Does anyone else think it's slightly suspect how only now the rash of "Three Red Lights of Death" has become so prominent? To be fair though, the Microsoft Chap on the phone was totally kind and helpful and I'll be sending my console off to be repaired even though it was bought on launch day, so I'm at least satisfied that Microsoft is looking after me, so well done to them for swallowing the financial hit of a hardware mistake they made rather than sticking to their original warranty and leaving me up the creek without a paddle.

Avatar image for stewarty77

I agree with what they are doing for their customers is very good but it should have worked in the first place!

Avatar image for _Sam_

I hope my 360 will still work I don't want to have to deal with this ;)

Avatar image for Evanrocknuma

Ha this is amazingly convenient I got the ring of death this morning and had to call in to get repairs. There goes the rest of my summer game plans though... oh well better to wait for a working console than keep a broken one.

Avatar image for CocopuffsGM

Microsoft is now my favorite company in the console wars. Nintendo is great, but they just don't have enough money to buy all the good games for their console. Sony has made me mad through several greedy actions which I will not mention. I'm not saying the other companies aren't greedy, but Sony's greed (in these cases) robbed the customers. (not talking about the PS3 price) I'm quite relieved at this too, my 360 broke a couple weeks ago, and someone threw away my 360 box where I kept the receipt. I feared I would have to pay the $140 for the repair, after owning my 360 for less than 6 months. Taking a step like this shows great strength in Microsoft, spending over $1 billion just to make the customers happy, they will not profit from this I can almost promise you. The 360s only weakness has now become one of its greatest strengths in showing customers that they can count on Microsoft, eventually at least. The only thing to do now, is when the new more reliable systems come out (the "Falcons"), start replacing broken 360s with those. That would most definitely restore full faith in Microsoft for me. Final thought: Great move Microsoft. A good way to show you deserve your spot in the system wars.

Avatar image for BounceDK

My PS2 still works. Got it at launch. My NES & SNES still works, got those at launch too.

Avatar image for Alexadecimal

What annoys is how a lot of people seem to think that the 360 is the only piece of hardware with issues, come on I think its safe to say everybody who has ever owned a PS2 has had to replace it at least once. Original Xbox's used to break down after a while by not reading disks and stuff like that. N64s used to freeze up all the time as well. Face it, everything has problems, you cant win in that area, but an extended warrenty is a good start.

Avatar image for DouglasBuffone

I think this is a great step for Microsoft, they are addressing their console's only major problem

Avatar image for The_Gamer81

Bottom line is that if you were willing to purchase an xbox360, you should wait until Microsoft get their act togehter. I personally will wait until the system get better. If it still has a failure rate that bad, I will never buy it. It's simply not worth the hasstle of sending it back and waiting weeks to get it back from Microsoft. I will enjoy my PS3 for now.

Avatar image for bigstokes

33% is not a bit more than 5%, those are not even in the same ballpark! I am wating until they produce the 65nm chips.