Bonum Certa Men Certa

People Are Getting Rid of Xbox 360 as Sales Drop to 7th Position in Japan

Summary: Early signs of permanent death for the Xbox franchise, caused by faulty hardware, massive losses (billions of dollars), and failure to compete

XBOX 360 is probably known best for its record-breaking error rates, which made it a laughing stock from a financial perspective. Yesterday we wrote about Microsoft's admission that there might not be another Xbox. There are multiple sources for this this and Xbox 360 has just sunk further and is now ranked only 7th (yes, seventh!) in Japan:

Sales for Microsoft Corp.'s Xbox 360 fell in Japan in new retail data from the region.

Media Create Co. on Fri. reported that the Xbox 360 sold 6,489 units between Dec. 21 to Dec. 27 to rank No. 7 in overall hardware sales.

This is pathetic. As mentioned yesterday, Microsoft cites US-only surveys when it comes to Xbox 360 because everywhere else in the world the picture is very different (far less flattering to Microsoft). Here is a new editorial titled "Why I Bought a PS3"; it speaks about ditching Xbox 360 for a PlayStation 3 and it says:

But despite my heavy investment in Microsoft's gaming platform, something about a proper new Final Fantasy game appearing on the Xbox 360 felt horribly wrong, like dropping a Ferrari engine into a Buick body. Sure, she'll run, but the soul of the machine would just be off somehow.

Associated Content has another new article:

Red Ring of Rant - a Mad Gamer's Opinion of the Xbox 360

Imagine the horror of any gamer when he sees three blinking red lights on his Xbox 360 staring back at him. Well, it happened to me about a year ago in my college dorm room. The problem was that my warranty had expired on my console and guess what, Microsoft makes you pay them $100 to repair the console. So, for about 1/3 of the cost of a new Xbox, the same company that caused the hardware failure in the first place wants you to pay them to fix the problem they created. It's like some guy coming up to your car, smashing the windows, and then wanting you to pay him $50 to fix the same windows he had broken.


Unless you have a warranty on your system, don't bother paying Microsoft another dime of your money and instead, get a PS3. I've even heard that Microsoft repairs aren't permanent and that even the new systems are loaded with technical problems. Save yourself that bottle of Advil and instead, buy a better piece of hardware like the PS3 or Wii. Here's one gamer hoping that in the future, Microsoft gets the red ring of death and can no longer pollute the world with its malfunctioning products.

Some Web sites are suggesting home repair, but it's hardly a solution to inherently-faulty hardware design. Our reader Ryan, who is a former Microsoft MVP, sold his Xbox 360 last month; he is moving to the Wii and yesterday he told us a lot more in the IRC channel.

"I'm not the only one finished with XBOX," he wrote. "I'm sure that sales of their next system will suffer because of people like me that remember how unreliable their last one was. I replaced it with Wii for a number of reasons, 100% backward compatibility was one of them and another was they have like 1/30th the failure rate of XBOX 360. 30 XBOX 360s die per 1 Wii, that's just too damned funny. It's like Microsoft is saying 'You're 30 times more likely to experience a failure with our system that costs 3 times more. Buy XBOX.'"

“I had kind of wondered how long they would tolerate a product that does nothing besides burn cash.”
      --Ryan Farmer
He later added: "Their shareholders must have had enough of quarter after quarter of lost money since 2001. I had kind of wondered how long they would tolerate a product that does nothing besides burn cash. apparently 10 years of bad product is their bullshit threshold. When I say 3 times more, I mean not just the initial price, cause that's easy to manipulate, I mean the $100 wifi, the $60 a year XBOX Live... the[n] $10 more for every game, added onto the $300 console.

"Initial price point is what makes or breaks a sale, I know that from being in retail. You have to price things to where they look affordable even when they aren't, and then shove everything else in as an "accessory". Like, you see retailers selling Blu Ray Disc players well below what they bought them for, but a new release movie will be $30 or higher. Video game consoles have always been loss leaders, but leave it to Microsoft to really start making you bleed for games and accessories later, even stuff that should have been part of the console. It really tells you how poorly managed their XBOX division is if they take in that kind of money and can't post a profit. Most of the things they sell you are imaginary! like "Microsoft Points". They don't even incur any expenses to make or distribute or retail that stuff."


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