back to article MS hit with Red Ring of Death lawsuit

Just four words can send a Microsoft Xbox 360 executive running for the hills. And they’ll be getting their trainers on now, because a Red Ring of Death lawsuit has been filed against Microsoft. A report by DailyGamesNews states that the lawsuit alleges Microsoft knew about the infamous RRoD problem as far back as 2005, but …


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  1. Matt
    Jobs Halo

    Don't people have better things to do?

    Seriously... It's a games console! Yes, it was a bit shocking with the failure rates, but at least they sorted out their warranty policy in the end... I can't see someone claiming a loss of earnings on that one!

    At least they should have gone away in the knowledge that if it were an Apple product, it would have cost twice as much, only have half the advertised power and skimpted on the most important features... Probably would have looked a hell of a lot nicer and been a lot quieter, mind you ;)

  2. John PM Chappell

    What could be better than legally bashing MS?


    Microsoft shipped a fatally defective product, in full knowledge of its defects, at a considerable market price. Damn right they ought to suck it up now they're being called on it. Many of us knew back then what we can prove now, the XBox 360 is a pile of shite, hastily cobbled together and very poorly designed, even down to the level of cooling provided in the chassis. FAIL.

  3. Daniel B.

    Bring 'em on!

    This needs to be done. MS has been able to fudge Windows users with crappy code, but fortunately in the electronics device market, the rules are clear: defective crap should be replaced; deceitful marketing *will* be punished.

    Selling expensive stuff with well-known flaws is pretty much scamming the consumers. Of course, if MS had conceded that its games console was defective, it might have lost ground against the PS3/Wii as many would-be buyers would've held off. So it does make sense to sue 'em!

    @Matt: Ever heard of the Apple Pippin? It tanked.

  4. William Bronze badge


    Yes, maybe it was a games console. But it was £200 worth of console.

    They sorted out the warranty because they knowingly knew of the issue. The only thing the extended warranty covered was the RROD. If that isn't an acknowledgement of the issue, I don't know what is.

    Extending a warranty on a product that has a known fault yet continuing to sell that faulty product is not a solution.

    Why on Earth are you attempting to defend them?

  5. Turgut Kalfaoglu
    Gates Horns

    why stop at XBOX?

    I think customers should be up in arms of the lack of security and reliability in all Windows products, especially XP and Vista. However, having recently "lost" all IIS sites defined on my Windows 2003 server, I would say that reliability problems haunt ALL microsoft products.

  6. GF
    Thumb Down

    What a joke ... a game console rules your life?

    Matt, I agree. People have too much time on their hands to be so concerned about the XBox RROD. Get your money back if your XBox is bad. Not worth the lawsuit, just a full refund for the XBox console and accessories purchase.

    Like to see the excuses for the complaints in the lawsuit:

    * Not having a working XBox caused me to have to pay attention to my spouse and family;

    * I actually got a date in years because I was not playing with the XBox and was forced to socialize;

    * My butt is no longer sore from sitting too long playing with the XBox


  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    We've had the red ring of death

    It's not pleasant when it happens within a month or so of going out of warranty. We didn't have time to mess about Microsoft (whom we understand will repair out of warranty 360s) or getting it repaired (yes, possible, but we can't guarantee it won't come back). So, we bought a Playstation 3 instead. The PS3 is, BTW, a counter intuitive PoS in my most humble opinion but overall a more sorted package.

  8. yeah, right.

    @Matt - this IS what's better.

    Making a convicted monopolist and a renowned anti-consumer corporation obey the law is something "better" Matt. Since the official legal enforcers won't do it because they're too busy eating donuts, and the legislators won't beef up the laws because they're paid not to, it's up to the consumers themselves to enforce some sort of consumer protection. I hope they soak Microsoft for every last dime they made on that piece of shit, as well as significant (for Microsoft, not your average punter) punitive damages that they'll think twice about doing it again.

  9. soaklord

    The 360 is a pile?

    Umm... hastily cobbled together and very poorly designed? You mean like EVERY other consumer product out there? Every single person I know who owned a PS2 had to have theirs go back to the shop to get fixed. (strangely you don't hear about that, because the PS2 was really the only game in town) Every dual or triple console owner I know prefers xbox for shooters, wii for sports and PS3 for Bluray. (Warning: this is NOT a scientific survey, the information was an informal poll of my particular sphere of influence and is not reflective of the population as a whole) The xbox is noisy. The xbox has had high failure rates. And the xbox is still the most fun console in my entertainment center. Sorry, fanboi, but I prefer mine with an x. The truth of the matter is that not one of my friends got an extended warranty on their PS2. They all had to pay for the repairs. As much as I try not to like Microsoft, I have to give them that at least.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Gates Horns

    Don't people have better things to do?

    Don't people have better things to do than twist any thread into a macbash - oh no, clearly not!

  11. This post has been deleted by its author

  12. Anonymous Coward

    Red Ring of Death

    -- My butt is no longer sore from sitting too long playing with the XBox

    Ah, that's what it is. I can't see Wii owners getting this, but maybe PS3 owners should watch out too.

  13. Ivan Headache

    I thought this was about curry.

    because there are times.....

  14. Paul
    IT Angle

    360 RRDO

    I have a RROD 360 in my bedroom. I couldn't be buggered packaging it all up as per Microsoft's instructions and posting it off so I bought another one. It is a joke though. I have virtually every console ever made all work perfectly. The 360 is the first console ever to break down on me. Even my 2600 still works flawless. Shame on Microsoft.

  15. James Pickett (Jp)


    "We didn't have time to mess about Microsoft (whom we understand will repair out of warranty 360s) or getting it repaired (yes, possible, but we can't guarantee it won't come back)."

    You didn't have time to make a 5min phonecall and put the 360 in a box for posting?

    Where on earth will you find the time to play your PS3?!?!?!

  16. ratfox


    People never have something better to do, when there's a lawyer involved...

    But as for suing Microsoft for software, that will be hard, after clicking on that EULA containing "Microsoft disclaims all warranties, expressed or implied, including the warranties of merchantability and fitness for a particular purpose"

    When you click on that, it pretty much means: I know this may be shit, but I'll eat it no matter what.

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    Get Real

    In the *real world* products are routinely released with known flaws.

    As long as a company provides the minimum warranty protection required by law for a product, the company legally owes no compensation for an unreliable product. That's assuming that the company never claimed the product would be reliable for X years. I've never seen any claim from Microsoft that the 360 should be reliable for any period of time. The company is just required to fix the product as per the terms of their warranty for the length of the warranty period. Remember that the Xbox360 originally came with a 90 day warranty in the US.

    HOWEVER, that doesn't mean that consumers should not punish manufacturers that put out unreliable rubbish. Unfortunately the only way to do that is by not purchasing their wares. See the US Auto industry for an example of consumer choice in action.

    Stupid lawsuits only waste taxpayer's money and make lawyers rich.

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    im not happy

    I'm on my 3rd 360 and I was glad that I haven't experienced the RROD for quite awhile, having my current 360 for 18 months I was getting the impression that MS have ironed out a few problems. Read this article tonight and literally about an hour afterwards, I got the RROD! I love the 360 but their console failure rate is beyond a joke now.

  19. Doug Glass

    Sheet Hoppins

    Sometimes you just make a bad purchase and waste money and you have to live with it. If you haven't yet, you will. If you have a bad box and the warranty period has ended, well, you got what you paid for.

    Take what actions you can to recoup what you can, but it's a piece of non essential hardware and a pretty cheap one at that. It's not a pace maker, it's not a wrongly filled prescription, and it not a life saving procedure you've been denied. It's a game console and in the grand scheme of things it just isn't worth frettin' over.

  20. William Bronze badge

    @many of you.

    &AC "GET REAL".

    Are you saying my toaster, and TV were made with known flaws. My fridge and cooker? They all manage to work quite happily.

    Basically you are talking a big pile of shit mate. Microsoft did NOTHING to rectify the flaws when it became apparent. Apart from extend the warranty, hopefully to prevent a class action suite.

    I imagine the class action suite is because Microsoft did nothing to rectify a problem. You cannot legally sell faulty goods just because you decide to give a warranty for it. Legally you need to fix the product, not continue to sell it.

    You have something called statutory rights, above the manufacturers warranty. Well, you do in Europe anyway.


    What the fuck has an EULA got anything to do with a hardware fault. Are you really suggesting that I can sell dodgy products down at the market, where 50% of them will develop a fault and so long as I write on a peice of paper that I accept no responsibility for anything I can continue to do so? You really think that would work? Jesus, you are a jackass aren't you.

    EULA's don't mean jack shit. It doesn't overide statutory consumer protection laws.


    I don't have an XBOX360. I wouldn't get one because I don't want to send it back for the next three years.

    I cannot believe the idiots defending a company who knowingly sold faulty products (with a high failure rate). Spouting shit about EULA's and other products being faulty is no excuse or no defense. You just come accross as a prick in my opinion. The true defination of a fanboy.

  21. Joe Blogs

    @James Pickett

    James....James.... don't you realise, they don't have time to send it back becuase they are too busy playing games. I mean - come on!!! what's more important that playing games!!!

  22. Anonymous Coward

    shame on Paul...

    yes lets give shame to MS by handing them more money... jeeze if you want to show MS how bad they are force them to pay to have it fixed! buying another one encourages them to do it again next time around!

  23. Hugh_Pym

    I'm shocked

    I hate Microsoft as much as the next guy but even I get bored sometimes with the constant griping at our Redmond overlords. BUT I am amazed at some of the apologist views espoused here.

    Some people seem to be suggesting that if you got caught in this scam you should give a wry smile and say 'Hey Microsoft you got me good with that XBox 360 gag, here's some more money for another go'.

    I wonder if it is there own money they are spending or if they are saying 'I can't be bothered with the effort of complaining and a few weeks lack of gaming, easier to get dad to buy me another one'.

  24. Mark
    Gates Horns

    PS3 FTW


    Microsoft Shill


  25. blackworx


    "I couldn't be buggered packaging it all up... so I bought another one."

    I take it money grows on trees where you live? Or are you just a spoiled rich kid?

  26. Daniel Wilkie

    Mine failed

    Mine failed 11 months after I bought it, I sent it back under warranty, had it back within 2 weeks and it's been fine ever since (2 years now) - oops. Shouldn't have said that :s

  27. D@v3
    Paris Hilton

    too many gamers too little time to spare

    I brought my 360 from CeX, 2 months later RRoD, very annoyed, took it back had it swapped out and was given the difference in price (due to the post xmas price drop) of the 2 units in vouchers, so from this M$ FAIL, i got a new 360, and 2games thrown into the deal, that was over a year ago, no problmes since. I think the fact that M$ were offereing to repair/replace the faulty machines at their own expense should have been the end of it.

    Yes they lured gamers in with faulty goods, but surely they werent the first to try that kinda schtick. and they sure as hell wont be the last.

    I know of a couple of gamers that had RRoD, and all got their consoles replaced/repaired for the price of postage (if not less), i also know of /lots/ of (one time) PS2 owners who had various problems, that were either never fixed, of repaired/replaced at their own expense.

    In general, i can't abide M$ shifty business practises, but on this issue, they have been less then evil.

    Coz id like to play on her Xbox

  28. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    I am on my 4th Xbox360, the 3rd Arrived dead straight from the repairers, the 4th lasted 2 months.

    It's utter garbage, no wonder they are selling them off cheap.

  29. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Err, yes, lots of whitegoods are made with flaws. If you got a washing machine in the 70s, for instance, it would last many years longer than current washing machines. My washing machine, fridge and cooker were all purchased at the same time, about 5 years ago. Recently I had to replace the element in the cooker because it exploded (leccy, not gas, which is a relief!) the washing machine, which was chosen because it was whisper quiet can now drown out a normal conversation and the fridge motor hums like the motor on an electric train.

    This is not to say that they are designed to fail, they just aren't designed to last, use cheapo components, keep the price down, fuck the customers.

    My parents washing machine from the 70s lasted until the mid 90s, the only reason they god rid of it was because its case had started to rust. Likewise their chest freezer and the cooker just looked too ugly, but nothing basically wrong with it, it went to a 2nd hand shop.

  30. richard
    Jobs Halo


    well i'm an apple fan and i love my 360, great value folks, just remember what we had 10 years ago. it plays all sorts of files off a flash drive and is good fun.

    it's just a pity about the noise and heat from it. oh, and it never starts up first time, i always have to turn off and try again.

    but still, great value and fun, don't take it too seriously, they'll fix it for you.

  31. Nigel

    Compare a reputable company

    My employer is currently negotiating with a UK-based PC suplier (who I won't name) over a fairly large number of PCs with power supplies that are failing. I confidently expect that they will replace all the power supplies in this batch of PCs, not just the ones that fail during the warranty period.

    They didn't know that they had bought a batch of defective PSUs (and the manufacturer of the PSUs probably didn't know that they'd bought a batch of dud something-or-others). Yet they'll exceed their legal obligations to preserve their good name (and our custom).

    Microsoft is a monopoly, so it doesn't feel the need to act responsibly, and instead ships a product they knew would fail, and probably calculated on making even more money out of the resulting repeat purchases (because you can't run the games on anything else). They deserve to be sued for every cent that's possible, and it's a shame that this will doubtless be so insignificant that they'll be doing the same again a year or two hence. The right thing would be for the Microsoft monopoly to be dismantled by the USA government, by breaking MS into several separate companies. In particular, Office should be divorced from Windows, Windows desktop from Windows server, and Outlook from Exchange server. Ideally games software from games hardware as well, although they'd have to do that to every other console manufacturer to be fair.

  32. Random Noise

    Design for warranty

    My friend did an engineering degree, & had a few classes on the different types of design

    Design for industry - make it rock solid & keep working no matter what the cost (within reason)

    design for environment - make it in such a way that it has the lowest impact on the environment.

    design for warranty - make it good enough to work until at least the warranty period has passed, but don't worry about if the components fail shortly afterwords, Joe Six pack will buy the new model soon enough anyway.

    I bought a 360 recently and it came with a leaflet stating 'for a mere X quid a day' I could buy a 3yr extended warranty.

    Fuck that! why should I pay for a warranty?

    I'm hoping that because I have the newer model it might not be too susceptible to the old RRoD, but if it dies outwith its warranty I'll put it to a 3rd party shop to repair & get them to throw in a modchip while they're at it so I can start pirating games.

  33. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    @Blackworx, Paul

    Clearly a spoiled rich kid. No-one with enough sense to get a decent salary would get that blasee about throwing away a few hundred quid.

    Especially with (free) fixes stuck all over the 'net.


    Anyway, didn't MS accept Warranty returns or repairs on this sort of thing? If so then it's no worse than most other bits of kit and they're just your average american-style litigio-phile.

  34. Leo Davidson

    @Nigel "Microsoft is a monopoly"

    "Microsoft is a monopoly, so it doesn't feel the need to act responsibly"

    Really? I didn't realise Microsoft were a monopoly in the console market. I must have been sleeping when Nintendo, despite being massively ahead this generation, decided to throw in the towel along with Sony. It's a shame that Microsoft are now free to abuse their customers safe in the knowledge that they cannot jump ship to a different console but, oh well, at least it means I'll only have to buy one console to play all of the games next generation.

  35. M

    @Random Noise

    My 60Gig version went red ring of deathy a couple of weeks ago. I was not amused.

  36. Ricky Cann

    @Random Noise

    I agree with your statement,

    " for warranty - make it good enough to work until at least the warranty period has passed, but don't worry about if the components fail shortly afterwords, Joe Six pack will buy the new model soon enough anyway."

    This reminded me of something my a-Level Design and Technology teacher taught us. We studied an article about Volvo who, we were told, once released a car that was designed to last 17 years. The design, manufacture and advertising all leant heavily towards quality, reliability and longevity. They quickly removed the bullet from their foot when their client base stopped buying the next model due to how good the aforementioned one was.

    All subsequent Volvos now have built in obsolescence.

  37. DR


    I don't see a problem here really.

    so what, you bought an xbox360, it failed.

    so microsoft gave you a new one.

    what's the problem?

    and they only extended the warranty for a few years for a known fault? OMG!!

    what did you expect? world wide product recalls?

    out of 170 returns 110 were red ring of death, but the total number of sales far exceeds 170.

    thus this problem affect what, 1 in every hundred? one in every thousand?

    boo hoo, if you get the problem you get a new toy anyway, why the need to get a new toy and then go out to get more money as well?

  38. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    re: First poster Matt

    "At least they should have gone away in the knowledge that if it were an Apple product, it would have cost twice as much"

    "Probably would have looked a hell of a lot nicer and been a lot quieter, mind you ;)"

    You're talking about the PS3, but that was made by Sony, not Apple.

  39. Random Noise


    "My 60Gig version went red ring of death"

    Nightmare! I'll just have to try to avoid too many marathon sessions & hope it doesnt get too hot. Luckily the missus normally has some *amazing* program with the fat faced twat Jamie Oliver to watch which stops me hogging the tv for too long ;)

  40. PIB
    Jobs Horns

    @ soaklord & the other fawners

    If MS came and s*** on you, you'd find a reason to excuse them.

    Talk about brown-nosing...

    ... and I've had a PS2 from launch which has NEVER failed me. I take care of my machines and don't drop doughnuts and coke all over them, as some of you probably do.

    Couldn't stop my XBotch RROD'ing on me though. Great job Microshit.

  41. Anonymous Coward


    "thus this problem affect what, 1 in every hundred? one in every thousand?"

    Nope, not even close. 1 in 3.

    If you actually bother to read the Squaretrade article, and the update on it, it points out that the survey was done AFTER Microsoft had announced the 3yr RROD warranry, and given consumers a direct point of contact for repairs, SquareTrade openly admit their 17% failre rate is absolute best case, and the likelihood of consumers not contacting them, and phoninh Microsoft direct is very high indeed, thus making the 30-40% failure rate that retailers are seeing as much more accurate.

    I don't know ANY 360 owner who has not had to send them 360 off on at least one occasion, I know 4 that have sent theirs away over 4 times.

    Not good at all. The worst consumer product in history???

  42. Vincent

    @ William

    "Apart from extend the warranty, hopefully to prevent a class action suite."

    Actually, i'm around 90% sure that Microsoft have had some hardware refreshes for the 360 to try and reduce the chances of the end user getting the RRoD.

    How effective these hardware refreshes are though, I have no idea.

  43. Anonymous Coward

    Not good

    I kinda assumed that Microsoft had fixed all this nonsense by now, as the 360 has been out 3 years.

    Nope, picked up a new 60GB 360 the other week for the kids, and it failed within 3 days. Took it back to Morrissons and they refunded it, bought a PS3 instead (and so far, very impressed with it).

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