Via a press release issued on Wednesday, Microsoft announced that it would replace the power cords on 14.1 million defective Xbox consoles worldwide due to reports of electrical component failures. These failures are rare, as less than 10,000 out of the 14.1 million consoles have been reported to experience these failures, but 30 instances have been reported where these defects have caused minor injury or minor property damage. In 23 of the 30 instances, owners have reported smoke or damage to a carpet or entertainment centre. The seven remaining instances were more dire however, as these have brought reports of minor burns to the hand.Robbie Bach, senior vice president of the Microsoft Home and Entertainment Division called the move "a preventative step we’re choosing to take despite the rarity of these incidents." He went on to say "We regret the inconvenience, but believe offering consumers a free replacement cord is the responsible thing to do."
The faulty components in question stem from Xbox consoles produced before October 23, 2003 in all regions except in Continental Europe, where all consoles produced before January 13, 2004 contain the defect.
To order a replacement cord, gamers who own Xbox consoles that were manufactured before the above time frames should go to Microsoft's official Xbox site and click on the "Power Cord Replacement for Xbox" link. After the order is placed, the cords will take two to four weeks to arrive at your home. Microsoft has also warned those who own one of the 14.1 million defective consoles to unplug their Xbox when not in use.