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Xbox One buyers beset by buggy disc drives

The big question: are the flaky drives just isolated incidents or a sign of a more widespread malfunction?

Lance Whitney Contributing Writer
Lance Whitney is a freelance technology writer and trainer and a former IT professional. He's written for Time, CNET, PCMag, and several other publications. He's the author of two tech books--one on Windows and another on LinkedIn.
Lance Whitney
2 min read
First Look
Watch this: Microsoft Xbox One hands-on

Some early Xbox One buyers are complaining that their disc drives don't work.

Commenting via the Neowin and NeoGAF forums as well as other sites, users say the console makes a clicking or grinding noise after a disc is inserted and then just stops right there or spits the disc out. Either way, the console is seemingly unable to read the disc.

A few Xbox One owners have posted videos to YouTube that display the problem. One user who who dubbed his post "Redmond, we might have a problem," served up links to videos from four different people who demonstrated the glitchy disc drive.

So far, only a relatively small number of people seem to have reported the issue online. And manufacturing defects aren't unusual for a new product, assuming they affect just a minor percentage of units. Many buyers of Sony's PlayStation 4 have complained about units that crash, fail to boot up, or display a flashing blue light instead of video. Sony called those "isolated incidents" within its expectations for a new product launch.

The Xbox One's true test will come when it finds itself in the hands of many more people on Friday and throughout the weekend.

In an e-mail to CNET, a Microsoft spokesman didn't comment on the reports of malfunctioning disc drives but did explain the support options available for customers who run into technical trouble.

We know that with a hardware launch of this magnitude customers will have questions and we have many avenues for customers to get the answers they need and get back in the game as soon as possible. Rest assured we plan to take care of our customers. Any customer who believes they are experiencing an issue with their Xbox One should reach out to us. There are many avenues available for customers to get in touch with us including: Talking to a live customer support person that can call you back if you don't want to wait; Xbox.com for support pages and forums; On Twitter with @XboxSupport; and Accessing help and diagnostics on the console by saying "Xbox Help."

Update, November 23 at 5:20 a.m. PT: Adds response from Microsoft.