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Print 80 comment(s) - last by cmdrdredd.. on Jan 18 at 9:37 PM

Bill Gates says Xbox 360 reliability will go from zero to hero

For the current generation of gaming consoles, the Xbox 360 has several reputations. On the positive side, the Xbox 360 is the undisputed leader of online service and multiplayer, but on the negative side, it also holds a track record of being fairly unreliable.

At one point, up to one-third of all Xbox 360 consoles experienced the hardware failure popularly known as the Red Ring of Death, which rendered the console unusable.

In response to the apparent hardware design flaw, Microsoft in June 2007 introduced a revised cooling design with heatpipe and heatsink to cool the GPU. New “Falcon” hardware that would include 65nm chip technology, which was later found to apply only to the CPU, landed in stores last Fall. Hardware to integrate a 65nm GPU, codenamed “Jasper,” isn’t due until this August.

While many from Microsoft’s entertainment and devices division have spoken on the Xbox 360’s reliability record, Bill Gates was mostly removed from commenting on the issue – until now. Speaking in a BBC Video interview, Gates revealed that it’s now Microsoft’s goal to make the Xbox 360 “the most reliable” console on the market.

“Well, we certainly had to apologize to our uses about a number of boxes that had to be replaced,” said Gates. “We did that for free for all of those people, we've gotten a lot of positive feedback about the way we handled it.”

“We've got incredible reliability on the new work we've done,” he continued. “Our commitment is that it will be the most reliable video game box out there. People really love the Xbox because of the content, but we've got to make sure that the hardware never stands in the way of that.”

To cover owners of older Xbox 360 hardware that may still be vulnerable to the Red Ring of Death, Microsoft in July 2007 extended its warranty to cover the specific hardware failure for three years from purchase.



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By SirLucius on 1/13/2008 4:25:07 PM , Rating: -1
quote:
If I'm looking at buying a processor, I'm not going to buy AMD because back in the P4 days Intel was slow and overheated


That's a different situation that doesn't really apply here. You're talking about the difference between two different generations of hardware. It would make more sense if you said, "Don't base your decision to buy the Xbox 720 (or whatever it'll be called) off of the old 360 numbers." The current batch of 360's are revisions. The same basic architecture is still used though.

quote:
...don't claim there's something unforgivably wrong with the box today.


In my book a 15-20% failure rate is unacceptable, especially when considering the competition. Both the Wii and the PS3 (after checking the numbers) have reported failure rates of under 1%. You could argue that the Wii is older tech that is more reliable, but the same can't be said for the PS3.

It's great that Microsoft is still trying to provide a more stable system, but don't sugarcoat the issue. It's still bad, just not as bad as before.


By milomnderbnder21 on 1/13/2008 7:26:35 PM , Rating: 5
You aren't making any sense.

If you buy an Xbox now, then it comes with a failure rate well below 15%, how much lower we still don't know.

That's what someone should be evaluating a piece of hardware on: what it actually is, not what it was.

Claiming that you won't buy a 360 now because of failure rates that were solved is illogical, because those rates do not apply. Don't buy it because you don't like the games or because you're some weird fan-boy. Don't put it down for what it isn't.


RE: If they had just got it right in the first place!
By bgm063 on 1/14/08, Rating: -1
By Nightskyre on 1/14/2008 8:35:26 AM , Rating: 3
Actually, after the holiday rush, all the bad ones are likely sold.

That being said, there is a very easy way to check. If you pick up the 360 box, and it says the system has HDMI, it's using the die shrunk CPU and modified GPU cooling package. They did it all at once.


By wallijonn on 1/14/2008 11:58:55 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
If you buy an Xbox now, then it comes with a failure rate well below 15%, how much lower we still don't know.


Seeing as how the revised editions came out last August we'll have to wait until next August to see if there really has been a drop. One site said that there were RRoDs reported even with the newer Elites, so who is to say whether or not all the problems have been fixed?

Me, I keep looking for a FDOU Arcade but still can't find one. I own a PS3 and a Wii, along with an N64 and a PS2 tall boy. I really wanted a 360, but the reliability scared me away. Even my brother used to boast how his original 360 never had a problem. Then eleven months later it died. Now he boasts about the fast turn around time, about two weeks to get a replacement. He loves his 360. Meanwhile I have yet to play a game on the PS3, instead I use it exclusively as a movie player. I will probably buy a 360, but have seen no need to go out and rush to buy it. "Blue Dragon" and "Bioshock" are the only two games I am interested in buying, although I will rent Halo 3.


By Steve Guilliot on 1/14/2008 5:18:33 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
But you can't deny that the failure rate of the 360 is still higher than it should be.


If Microsoft now has the 360 within industry standard failure rates with the new design, which is possible, and the old units are out of the retail channel, then I would say the failure rate is now where it should be.

Your assumption that we "can't deny" the 360 is still unreliable is false.


"If you can find a PS3 anywhere in North America that's been on shelves for more than five minutes, I'll give you 1,200 bucks for it." -- SCEA President Jack Tretton














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