XBOX Screams That Month Old Unit’s 90-Day Warranty Is Expired

Brent’s friend bought an XBOX in November with a 90-day warranty. It died. When he called the Bangalore based tech support, “Steve” told him:

“I don’t care if you bought your console yesterday, we still show your warranty is expired.”

We’ve received several complaints about XBOX’s customer service recently. Perhaps Microsoft needs to find a new outsourced call center. These guys, seems like someone peed in their curry.

Transcript, inside, with screaming. — BEN POPKEN

Brent writes:

    “I run a tech company and a support organization. I’m overly courteous to tech support people because I know they have a tough job. My friend J bought an XBOX 360 bundle at Costco and it bricked on him in roughly two weeks. I was over there Friday night and decided to call XBOX support for him since he’s kind of a hothead about these things. Here’s how it went:

    On hold for about 20 min, finally reach Steve, India-based tech support:
    Steve: How can I help you?
    Me: I’ve got a dead console.
    Steve: Let me walk you through the troubleshooting steps….
    (we go through all the steps, he verifies it’s dead, we go through the serial number, name, address, etc.)
    Steve: Sir, when did you purchase your XBOX?
    Me: Early November.
    Steve: I’m sorry sir, but your console is out of warranty.
    Me: Excuse me?
    Steve: Your console comes with a 90-day warranty, your warranty is no longer valid.
    Me: I don’t understand, I purchased the console one month….
    Steve (suddenly angry, agitated): EXCUSE ME SIR, PLEASE LET ME FINISH
    Me: What?
    Steve: (almost yelling): IF YOU DO NOT STOP THIS I WILL HAVE TO END THIS CALL RIGHT NOW!!!!!!!!
    Me: I’m sorry, I have no idea what you’re talking about….
    Me: (very calm still): OK
    Steve: Our system shows your console’s warranty has expired.
    Me: Well, that doesn’t seem right since I bought it about a month ago.
    Steve: (here’s the kicker) I don’t care if you bought your console yesterday, we still show your warranty is expired.
    Me: (stunned, but still courteous, as I’m clearly dealing with a nutjob here) OK, what do I need to do?
    Steve: You need to fax your receipt to [he gives me the info]
    Me: OK, and then you will process the repair?
    Steve: NO
    Me: Huh?
    Steve: Then we will have your warranty updated in our system. You will need to call in again to tech support to request a repair.
    Me: Really?
    Steve: Yes
    Me: Could I please be routed to a supervisor?
    Steve: Yes, and sir, I’m sorry if I was rude to you.
    Me: It’s no problem, could I have your last name, Steve?
    Steve: NO, you cannot.
    Me: Could I have an employee number or something to identify you?
    Steve: NO, you cannot. Please hold.

    Anyway, I stay on hold for another 45 minutes (really) to reach a supervisor. He STILL does not accept that my console is within warranty, but instead of requiring me to fax the receipt and call them back, he actually allows me to send in the receipt with the console as a means of verification.

    I let him know about my experience with Steve and that I work in this business and was pretty shocked that anyone would talk to a customer that way. He doesn’t sound interested, but lets me know someone will talk to Steve’s supervisor.

    All in all, a complete nightmare. Microsoft should be ashamed of their XBOX support operation. First of all, to immediately assume a customer is wrong is terrible customer service. Second, to yell at a customer and cut them off as they are calmly asking you to clarify something is completely insane. Last, when you are facing a class-action lawsuit because so damn many of your consoles are exhibiting this exact problem, you should probably consider some kind of proactive moves to avoid infuriating even more customers and exposing yourself to Sony battery-style bad publicity. Terrible stuff.

    Want more consumer news? Visit our parent organization, Consumer Reports, for the latest on scams, recalls, and other consumer issues.