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Sony: The Death of Consumer Loyalty

PS University writes "This generation of consoles has brought forth something that the gaming industry has never seen the likes of and that is the console wars. Sure, Nintendo and Sega had a rift back in the 90s, but it was never quite at the level it is today. It seems you're either a member of the Microsoft camp or you're taking refuge at Sony's headquarters. Regardless of which side you choose to represent, without including the neutrals, the reasoning behind these console wars always falls back onto one factor – brand loyalty.

I remember a time when brand loyalty meant something. Supporting a product used to mean that that company would appreciate your business and would enjoy keeping it. A company would do what it could to satisfy its consumers in order to keep that consumer base from dwindling, but growing through consumer loyalty and treating the consumer right. However, ever since the launch of this generation of consoles, consumer loyalty has been thrown out the window in exchange for greed and profitability. Of course, you can make your argument for which of the two empires you feel carries the most evil, but when it's truly broken down to it, Microsoft is willing to go further to keep you as a customer than Sony is."

Update:

Updated: It's amazing what an article on a website can achieve for you when it receives tens of thousands of hits and a ton of link-ins from around the country/world. It's also amazing to know exactly how full of crap the customer service representatives at Sony truly are. They went from not being able to do it without the console unit or my "private" information, to being able to randomly do it out of no where and sending me an email to let me know.

The power of word is obviously strong. It's ridiculous that I had to go to this length to get it done, but whatever. It's done.

Dear DAVE,

Recently you requested assistance with your PlayStation® Network account and the Video Download Service. Per your request, we have deactivated your original console from your account.

To activate your new console, please click the link below and follow the instructions in the article.

http://playstation.custhelp.com/cgi-bin/playstation.cfg/php/enduser/std_adp.php?p_faqid=796

If you have questions or require further assistance, please call SCEA Consumer Services directly at (866) 286-5123.

We are available Monday through Friday, 7:30 a.m. until 5:30 p.m., Pacific Time.

Your Service Request Number is 1-237200801. Please reference this number when calling us.

Sincerely,
The PlayStation® Consumer Services Team

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Lame
grow up.
Pain3328d ago WhoDisagree(0)Agree(0)
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MISLEADING TITLE, It looks like sony is saying this and it is not. It is just some random blogs opinion.
NightVyper3328d ago WhoDisagree(0)Agree(0)
Lame
knifefight3328d ago WhoDisagree(0)Agree(0)
Lame
a sony bashing article nothing else to say read the article you will understand what i mean
Kain813328d ago WhoDisagree(0)Agree(0)
The story is too old to be commented.
James Bond3328d ago

"Microsoft is willing to go further to keep you as a customer than Sony is."

Yes, I'm sure making you pay to play online, overpricing the accessories, and having the biggest video game console failure rate in history is a great way to appeal to your customers.....

alphakennybody3328d ago (Edited 3328d ago )

but its working though, just look At those bole buying halo odst @ 60$

The Killer3328d ago

not in europe and no in japan and not in the middle east!!!

the only thin MS did right was keep the PC shooter gamers addicted with 360 online and with some constant shooting games.

Scelestus3328d ago

Teh xbox wun dis generition of consol warz coz MS give teh best suppert for costomers!! PS3 is 3st place coz Sony hate America!! Where not gonna by there console!

talltony3328d ago

And Microsofts faulty buisness practices dnt work on me.

The Killer3328d ago

good to see human americans, but they are minority and majority is sheeps you know it.

PimpHandHappy3328d ago

what ppl do not understand is this

MS got the jump this gen and i know many ppl that bought the Xbox, well not many but a few, because they thought the PS2 was under powered and they wanted the next step up... nothing wrong with that ok

PPL get invested soon after they buy a system... you buy games and of course in the 360's case you pay to play online... one of my buddys (that i dont talk with anymore because he is a childish 35yr old man) bought the HD-DVD... He had all the speaking points... PS3 lacks games... Its online is useless... Blueray is useless... blah blah blah.... This same dude spent big money to get his Xbox modded to burn games onto the hard drive and soon after he had a useless monster box because MS cut that system off.

I have heard in many places ppl talk about having 3 or 4 360's... This is because they are invested and dont want to think they just wasted 1000's in gaming.... Its why Sony has faced so much heat. It cost 2much 4sure when it launched but the system is showing its self to really be the system of choice... IMO

MS will cut off the 360 and then claim it beat the PS3 even if the PS3 sells for 5 years after they do so

JasonPC360PS3Wii3328d ago

I'm a droid WAAAAAAAAAAAAAH!!! I like to cry WAAAAAAAAAAAH!!!

Narutone663327d ago

the people who are gullible. Look at Japan, I don't see the 360 outselling the PS3 or the Wii. It took the 360 4 years to reach 1 million console shipped. Who knows how many of those are replacement for the RROD. I don't hate the games in the 360, I just hate how the hardware is defectively made.

+ Show (5) more repliesLast reply 3327d ago
3328d ago Replies(9)
Rai853328d ago

btw why they show it to us, like Sony have said this think, it is his own opinion

"Sony: The Death of Consumer Loyalty"
the title is very missleading, i thought sony themselfs said that

randomwiz3328d ago

yes it is... most consumer products have no more than a 1 year warranty.

Just because the competitor does it doesn't mean that Sony has to do it.

Should Microsoft make live free?
They don't need to. PSN needs to be free because charging for it wouldn't be worth it.

Should Sony make a 3 year warranty?
They don't need to. Microsoft has to make a 3 year warranty, or face A LOT of upset customers.

davekaos3328d ago

This article reeks of MS fanboy BS.
Let me tell you my experience with MS, i bought the crystal xbox when that was released if any 1 remembers it, the crap only lasted 4 month then the lens failed, contacted Microsoft explained the situation and then was asked am i a hardcore gamer and how many hours a week i spend playing the console, on average i play about 35 hours a week, M$ rep then tells me due to the amount of hours i spend gaming they would not be able to repair the product free of charge because i game to much??? WTF are you serious, im still under warranty u retard.
Then the xbox 360, now that lasted longer, this 1 did me for 9 month then rrod, after all the hastle with the M$ reps again when i got my new unit i sold it.
Now the ps3 i have had the 60gb model since launch, still spend lengthy hours playing games and since launch i have had the blu ray fail 3 times,
And of all those 3 times sony has said to me. " we are sorry for any inconvenience this has caused you and as a good will gesture we will repair you unit free of charge.
3 times its broke 3 times outta warranty 3 times repaired for free.
WITH NO HASTLE.
Sorry for the language but the guy who wrote this article is a f*cking biased retarded M$ fanboy.
Im sick of ppl bashing the ps3 and sony when in fact the people behing the two are very concerned when it comes to customer satisfaction.
SONY AND PS3 FOR THE F*CKING WIN

HolyOrangeCows3328d ago (Edited 3328d ago )

What??

It's just another option for God's sake!
Even ''loyal fanboys'' aren't going to do that.
What a dumb article. Isn't this place called NEWS 4 gamers?

LazyDevs3328d ago

Death to consumer loyalty. Yeah right, there is more people with Sony's junk in there mouth then i tend to say. Actually this site is nothing but a extension of Sony's junk.

pixelsword3328d ago (Edited 3328d ago )

...Sony's products don't break down like Microsoft's products.

For example: does Nintendo have a three year warranty?

Mmmm.... thankyouverymuch.

Second of all, despite the myriad of problems the 360 has, the three year warranty doesn't cover anything else but the RRoD and E72; which is then new slang for RRoD.

darthv723327d ago

myself. I play games for all systems because I am a gamer loyal to myself and my hobby. I choose no one particular brand to stay loyal to. I may start off each generation with whatever comes out first but by the end I have all contestants and quite a few games for each that I feel are worth my $$.

Being loyal to one system mfg is respectable but also limiting. I choose to not limit myself but to enjoy the best gaming has to offer regardless of system.

BattleAxe3327d ago

I feel that Sony has gone alot farther to please their customer base by building a far better console both in terms of hardware and exclusive games.

However, I like what MS is doing with Games for Windows and how you can use XBOX 360 periferals on the PC. Honestly I hope Games for Windows takes over because it beats buying an XBOX 360 and having to go through RRoD.

Just bought Crysis: Maximum Edition and Far Cry 1. Looking to buy Gears of War and maybe Left 4 Dead. One thing is for sure, I'm still not interested in HALO.

thesummerofgeorge3327d ago

Microsoft paying for games is not them doing more for the customer, it's for their own greed. If they cared about their customers they would focus on quality and consistency, Sony has done way more for me by continuing to do what they do regardless of Microsofts greedy tactics. Sony has done more for their customers by making a quality product, and coming out with the best games.

+ Show (5) more repliesLast reply 3327d ago
Sm0k3y_Bac0n3328d ago

I remember the days when manufacturers etc would offer to replace broken products a couple of months out of warrenty as an act of good faith. PS3 got YLOD - which the Sony woman on the phone said was a design fault in the older models - and even though my PS3 was only a bit out of warrenty and i'd spent £350 on it, refused to even offer a discount for fixing it because it was apparently my fault (even though i told id kept it well ventialted etc). I've heard stories of people being one day out of warrenty and Sony refusing to fix their consoles. One day?? If that had happened 5 years ago most compnaies would have at least offered something to help you out.

DavePSU3328d ago

Exactly. You get the entire point I'm expressing through this editorial. That's the problem I have with Sony right now. Their entire customer service structure is ridiculously bad. Microsoft offers you 3-years and all you need is a manufacture date on the back of your 360 -- you don't need a 3-year old receipt.

Five years ago, a company like Sony would have cared with the PS2.

slave2Dcontroller3328d ago

I had two fatties and my primary YLOD on me and would only stay on a fraction of a second before dying off again. With my 1 year warranty being expired and my copy of Fallout being stuck in the BR drive there was no way in hell I was shipping it off while having to pay $150 plus waiting a month plus for them to get me my Fallout3 back.

I wound up having to tear my console apart just to get my game out. This happened just a few days after the Slim came out so I ran out and got one of those and my other fatty is boxed up bc I want to preserve it due to Sony holting manufacturing for them.

I felt slighted and tearing my PS3 apart literally made me want to vomit bc not only was I losing a console, I was losing a great deal of game saves as well. I kept the spiderman font hood of my baby as a keep sake :(

PirateThom3328d ago

1. Sony don't require a reciept, they need the CECH number from the back of the console.
2. They won't refuse to repair any console, they may charge, but they'll never outright refuse (unless they take it in and it's been tampered with).
3. Microsoft was FORCED to extend the warranty due to class action lawsuits, not out of the goodness of their hearts, Sony's year warranty is the same for most other companies. The 360 failure rate is also way higher and the extention only covers RRoD and E72.
4. Outside of warranty, no company is legally bound to repair or replace, the fact is, Sony (and Microsoft and Nintendo and x other companies) are offering a service they don't have to even offer once the warranty expires. When Sony repair a PS3, they're charging you for a new motherboard, essentially, anyone else who "repairs" PS3s is charging for a sticking plaster fix, which is why Sony's in house repairs (or any other companies in house repairs) will ALWAYS be higher than a third party.
4. Sony were WORSE with the PS2.

I've had a PS3 repaired and then replaced, I'm not just making things up here.

Sarcasm3328d ago

"One day?? "

If you owned a company, that employs hundreds and thousands of people while also trying to make profit. You make a 1 year contract. 365 days or out of warranty. Yes, one day is one day. But the warranty does not say 366 days of warranty. Or else everyone who is 366 days out of warranty will say "Well what about me?"

You guys seriously think like kids. You don't think of the whole picture. It's always about "me me me me me me me me"

whothedog3328d ago (Edited 3328d ago )

I got the YLOD and it ate a game Killzone 2 which wasn't mine so I had to spend $60 for a game that wasn't mine.

It was under warranty at Best Buy or else Sony was going to charge me $150. I filed complaints online and over the phone and they couldn't care less.

beavis4play3328d ago

and where would it end? if they allow 366 days, then someone who sits at 367 days would be b1tching. (and so on)

starvinbull3328d ago (Edited 3328d ago )

Smoky you miss a very important point.

The money spent on fixing RROD 360s with 3 years warranty is money M$ should have, could have and Sony themselves did spend on producing a better product in the first place.

What would the 360 sales look like if they'd released a year later with a better failure rate, minus 10 million 360s under TVs and less shelf space and dev support than Sony? My guess is that it'd have cost them less than a 3 year warranty.

M$ have been reactive, Sony have been proactive.

Karum3328d ago (Edited 3328d ago )

You think Microsoft offer that 3 year warranty out of the goodness of their hearts or what mate?

It was either that or probably end up being forced to do a recall due to class action law suits coming at them left right and centre.

Oh and just to offer my own PS3 experience. Last year in the week when LBP and Motorstorm were released in the UK, my PS3's BR drive failed and was unable to read any discs. It was out of warranty by about a month, Sony replaced it free of charge. Of course I know other people who didn't get as lucky as I did, if they're guilty of anything it's of being inconsistent with how they determined who got a free replacement outside of warranty and who didn't.

morganfell3328d ago (Edited 3328d ago )

Yeah MS fixed all of my 360's that died. But their DRM fix took 2 years and by then many of the Live titles I had purchased didn't have anyone playing them making them worthless. There was another percentage of Live titles that to this day do not function and for which MS will not refund my purchase.

In addition having MS fix my consoles for 3 years is a joke considering it took 2 years to get back the cost I had to pay out of pocket when the first one died. Then when it's refurb came back it was RROD out of the box. Yeah, that makes that 3 year warranty worth while. It didn't take weeks to get my consoles back, it took months. All told, MS failed to reimburse me for 2 months of Live I lost due to not having a 360.

The 3 year warranty is nothing to brag about. And throwing out the 3 year warranty as a point of pride and failing to discuss why it had to be extended to 3 years in the first place is the kind of sleight of hand MS loves to perform themselves.

Playstationuniversity.com should also be aware that using a brand to get hits and then attacking that brand will turn the Sony fanbase on them in a heart beat. You might as well write off that worthless website. When you produce a pro Sony article we won't forget your past actions.

Sm0k3y_Bac0n3328d ago

You can argue whether sony or right or wrong in their business practice all day. Fact is when someone does get YLOD etc sony dont appear that concerned about it. They might not be legally obliged to fix it (though there was something going round the national newspapers a while ago saying electrical prodcucts are protected for 2 years or something - i forget exactly what it was about) but they piss a lot of people off when they act in such a manner towards their customers then blame them for the breakage.

Christopher3328d ago (Edited 3328d ago )

1. Don't compare this to 5 years ago, let alone 10 years ago. The world has changed a lot where most companies are posting losses or profits that are 90% shorter than they used to be. Companies can't afford to throw money at the customers anymore because the customers, in general, are looking for the lowest costs. That's not making the companies much profit.

2. So, you had a bad experience and this means Sony is now disloyal? Really? Are we ignoring the tremendous year Sony has had with games? Reduced console prices? More interaction with the gamers? Continuing to improve various experiences? Seems like you're taking your bad experience, which we've all had in some way or form with some product (mine was with a Chevy) and using it as a declarative statement towards the whole company. I mean, it's not like I can't Google Sony experiences and come up with results that were 'phenomenal' or 'superb customer experiences.'.

3. The theft of the PSPs was your fault, and no one else. Don't blame Sony, regardless of how much money you've spent you obviously didn't find it enough to safeguard two of your PSPs that were stolen from you.

4. As for being able to 'deactivate' your games, you really don't see how that's a HUGE INTERNAL CONTROL ISSUE? You're essentially saying that a single person has the ability to deactivate a system without having it physically there and without the user directly making the deactivation on the said machine? Talk about opening the doorway to abuse by allowing someone to deactivate machines that still have the games on them.

5. You laud the XBox 360 warranty extension as if there haven't been any issues with this, forgo the fact that it shouldn't have been necessary in the first place (seriously, you're arguing brand loyalty when a company knowingly puts out crappy hardware and is backed into a corner with civil law suits that would have crippled their business on a massive level). Did you perchance Google the issues that people have had with this? I'm fairly certain they will outweigh the issues that Sony brand owners have had with deactivation on a scale that's not even funny.

RememberThe3573328d ago

Why would Sony be concerned about YLOD? It's not a problem, and they probably couldn't do anything about it anyways. Thing go wrong in the manufacturing proses sometimes. If you get the YLOD, then you just have bad luck.

Get over it.

How about taking it like a man, do you whine about everything that goes a bit wrong in your life? So what if you got unlucky? Get it fixed and keep playing.

Keowrath3327d ago

When I first joined PSN, Sony sent me Casino Royale on Blu-Ray.

3 months out of warranty, blu-ray drive failed. No reciept, bought off Ebay, Sony had me a replacement within 48 hours.

I know several other people who's machines failed outside the warranty, the last was a Hard disc failure a year outside of his warranty. 60gb replaced within 48hrs.

Dunno if Sony Europe are better than other regions but myself and my friends have been treated very well by Sony.

DavePSU, sounds to me you have an axe to grind with Sony and it get's pushed through as news on N4G...

Sm0k3y_Bac0n3327d ago

The YLOD wasnt the main thing that bothered me if you actually chose to read what i wrote. It was the treatment of Sony of the news my PS3 had broke. Even so when i do spend £350 on a console i expect quite a lot of use out of it. It lasted me half the time my PS2 did. And i am back playing - though i didnt pay Sony a penny to fix my PS3.

+ Show (11) more repliesLast reply 3327d ago
NotoriousWarrior3328d ago

lol, not fixing RROD issues is really helping keep customers isn't it.

Stupid article.

DavePSU3328d ago

Yeah -- I see the point of your comment with Microsoft IMPROVING their sales in September from last years numbers. Really shows the consumer isn't willing to buy their product because they know they're protected by that golden warranty.