In one corner, we have a company offering expedited shipping and repair if you have a faulty console. They promote that they have less than a 1% failure rate and are willing to back it up by offering free repairs. In the other corner, we have a company charging you to fix a product that you received broken... which one do you think reads better in the headlines?
According to The News Reports, they received a report from a customer who purchased the Xbox One and had to return it – that's because it turned out to be a faulty unit and they were instructed to return the unit to Microsoft... for a price.
Technically, they were given options: pay more to get your Xbox One replaced quickly or pay nothing and wait up to 14 days. As noted in the article...
“They were told that they could pay Microsoft £381 (US$621) and receive a new Xbox One within 2 days, with the fee paid being refunded if Microsoft receives the defective unit back within 14 days. The other option was to wait for a free shipping box to arrive, send the console back and wait for it to be repaired and returned, which would take a minimum of 14 days. “
Yep, $621... that's a lot of money to pay in addition to the $500 you already spent to get the console.
Technically, the money you put down for the two-day turnaround is more like a deposit than an actual fee, but it's steep and unwelcoming nonetheless – unless, of course, you have extra income to burn like that?
On the opposite end of the spectrum, Sony has been doing any and everything in their power to appease their customer base. Offering fast repair and returns on your console to ensure that you get the most for your money, and the best form of customer service that they can offer, really helps shine through how different they are from Microsoft.
While some people can use the excuse that you can just wait out the 14 day minimum and hope your Xbox One gets back in time before you hit middle-age, the competition is showing that it doesn't have to be a hassle; it doesn't have to be a long wait and you don't have to pay an extra dime.
Even more than that, Gaming Blend's own Ryan Winslett can attest to the speedy and convenient service of Sony, writing up his own experience with a run-in with a potential PS4 problem. Did it require a $621 deposit? Nope. So why does Microsoft charge where Sony doesn't?
Well, some questions will remain unanswered until real journalists do some real digging. In the meantime, Microsoft is offering a free game for those who run into the problem of having a faulty unit, but anyone using their two-day turnaround service will be more than paying for the problem by paying out of pocket.
We'll keep you updated on how this scenario turns out and if Microsoft has a reasonable explanation from this rather odd customer service option.