Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Next-Gen console launch celebrations tainted with devastating hardware issues

With new technology there is always the possibility of unforeseen problems that arise immediately after they are released. It's especially common in this day and age where cell phones get upgraded every six months, tablets and computers at least every three. It's difficult to imagine that there is a long testing phase for these products, yet the vast majority usually go off without a hitch. Why is it then, that a product that has been in development for years can have so many issues?

Sony launched their Playstation 4 almost two weeks and immediately reports hit the internet about defects, "bricked" consoles out of the box and/or after downloading the mandatory launch update, and issues with the PS Network. With Sony's relatively optimistic numbers of only 0.4% of consoles being affected, the true number appears to be much higher. Customer reports on many sites have stated that when they have tried to call for a repair, Sony has kept them on hold for several hours if they even managed to reach the automated service. What's worse is the 4-6 week estimated repair time. The console just came out and they are already forcing people to wait more than a month so they can play what they actually bought? Pure poppycock.
"(While no hardware failures) most games for me were unplayable for 24-36hrs and required me to do 2-3 resets (to make them work)." - Mike M.

This isn't to say the Xbox One has been a white knight in the console world. Multiple users have experienced trouble with applications, especially Netflix, while others have been kept from playing the games at all due to an unknown malfunction that reverts them back to the dashboard mid-game. Others report a "rattling" that could mean loose hardware inside the console. The numbers aren't nearly the same scale of the PS4 failure rate, but it is still troubling to say the least.
"I love my #xboxone (so) far but it has given me one issue that I might have fixed but Idk yet. While playing #BF4, after matches the game crashes and returns to the dashboard. Selecting the game again starts the game over, not resume where I was. At first it was just with (Battlefield), but it soon spread to #KillerInstinct. While searching for a match, it crashed. then the crashing got worse. In both games (the) crashing increased and got random. Even offline killer instinct crashed" - @YourDevastator
A lot of issues can arise whenever you develop new technology. Hardware is not carved out of steel, and component parts can chip or break loose, especially during shipping. However these kind of problems should be thoroughly tested before they are placed on trucks and sold to millions of eager gamers. Those gamers also should not be forced to endure an extra 6 weeks of waiting to get a replacement system for an extremely large oversight. Software issues that restrict gamers from even using the console to play games or watch movies is entirely unacceptable as well. These are brand new units that should be in pristine working condition, not a lottery system where instead of being excited to play the newest launch title, you are instead praying you didn't get stuck with a broken one.

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