News Article

Inaccurate Reports Claim Microsoft Charging Users to Repair Faulty Xbox One Consoles

Posted by Ken Barnes

Unbelievable.

It appears that - as is the norm - Microsoft is under attack from a section of the Internet today, following claims by a relatively unknown site that the company is charging users in order to replace faulty Xbox One consoles.

The report, published by "TheNewsReports.com" claims that one person in the UK was told that in order to get his Xbox One replaced within two days, he would have to pay a charge of £381. Failing that, he was told that he could wait for for the standard 14-day turnaround on repairs, for which Microsoft would not charge, and would also pay the shipping fees.

The actual facts of the matter are that if you wish to have Microsoft send you a new Xbox One within two days, they will place what is known as a "pre-authorisation" on your card, for the value of £381. This acts much like a deposit, even though the money is not fully charged to your card. When your brand new Xbox One arrives, you send your system back within 14 days and Microsoft will cancel the pre-authorisation, meaning that you've paid nothing. If you don't send your machine back, you're charged the £381 - which is about £49 cheaper than the actual price of a new Xbox One. (Ed - For the record, pre-authorisations on my bank card allow me to still spend the money elsewhere in the meantime. Your bank may be different.)

If you don't like the idea, you can wait for Microsoft to send you a shipping-paid box in which to put your console. You send it back to them, they fix it, they send it back to you within 14 days. All for free.

This move is designed solely to trip up fraudsters who would call in and claim that they have a faulty console, have a new one sent to them, and then never send the non-existent defective unit back. It also prevents people from getting their new console from Microsoft for absolutely nothing, and then selling the old faulty one on eBay for cash, listed as "fully working" - we've seen it happen many times.

If Microsoft pulls what would be a nasty move such as this, they're fair game not only to everyone on the Internet, but to us as well. You mark our words, we'll go after 'em where appropriate. In this case though, they aren't doing anything wrong. We're publishing this as this "story" has been retweeted, shared, and passed around a bunch already, with nobody really looking at the facts so far. The more you know, and all that.

[via thenewsreports.com]

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User Comments (1)

jb223

#1

jb223 said:

While I agree that this story is definitely not the travesty that some have made it out to be, there are a couple caveats that make it a bit more of an inconvenience than you've mentioned here. First off, about the bank holds, if your bank allows you to charge a hold to your account while also allowing you to dip well below that amount in your bank account, then I'd say you are most definitely the exception to the rule. It's the same thing that hotels will do, charging a fee to cover any incidentals, it's never actually pulled out of your account, but for the vast majority of banks, at least that amount must be in your account for the duration of the hold. This is done to protect the bank in the same manner that the hold is placed to protect Microsoft, if your bank allowed you to take all of your money out w/ a hold still placed on your account, the bank themselves would be responsible for the amount of that hold. So being that you've just put down a big amount in purchasing your console, there are many out there who simply don't have that kind of money in their account left, especially this close to Christmas, which leads to the second caveat. You mentioned in the article that the refurbished console would be returned "within" 14 days, but the actual statement was that the console would be returned "at the earliest" 14 days, which is a vastly different figure. The "within" statement was applying to the length of time that the purchaser has to return their broken console before they are fully charged for the loaner. In the case of foregoing the loaner, the purchaser has to wait for Microsoft to deliver a free shipping box, then the purchaser has to ship the console out, console is then fixed, then shipped back. 3 shipping intervals on their own would typically take at the least 14 days, keeping weekends in mind, so the 14 day figure is a quote for the earliest the console could be returned, but i haven't read any longer figure guarantees. There could also be a backlog w/ so many systems sold at launch, so the console could arrive 2 months from when you shipped it and it will still follow the guidelines set forth. People w/ problem consoles would be much better served returning at retail if it all possible, because while this isn't some Boogeyman Microsoft situation, it is an inconvenience for those that just want to play their new system.

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