Monday, March 7, 2011

Kinect-ing the world

This post is intended solely for people who happen to chance upon the blog looking for a solution to the US vs India XBox adapter solution.

On my last rip to the US, the only shopping I did was getting a XBox 360 with Kinect bundle. Since this was my first video game purchase since the old Nintendo-consoles-of-the-90s (the kinds that had Tetris and Mario and Contra!), I was pretty excited!
Also, the prospect of being able to control the game without a controller was kind of futuristic!

Now, after I bought the game, I realised a potential problem. The game was bought in US, but was intended for use in India. Since the voltage used in both countries is different, ie: 220 volts in India while 110 in the US; this needed a solution.
One option was a step down transformer. But reading up and researching a bit on the internets, I was pretty sure that a transformer was a bad idea and would blow up pretty soon!

Now during my search for the perfect solution, I came across this blog ! According to this, if you contacted Microsoft and told them your problem, they would send you an adapter free of charge.
Hah! Free adapter! High hopes, I thought!
But then, there was no harm in taking a chance!

So I got my brother to note down the registration number and the invoice number of the Xbox and contact Microsoft support on their toll free India number -- 1-800-102-1100.
And voila! The next day my brother tells me that they have responded to his problem and are sending in an adapter and cord FREE OF CHARGE! This was apparently a 'goodwill gesture' on part of Microsoft.

Sure enough, they wrote down my home address and sent the cords in! We got it on the 12th day of dispatch!*

We did not have to pay ANYTHING for the whole deal-- neither for the cords nor the shipping charges.

Overall, I feel the Microsoft support was fantastic in responding to our problems! Even while they had shipped the cord, my brother (like an immature kid) would call them up every other day to find out the whereabouts of the cord. While they could not trace the cord, they were pretty nice, and made all efforts to let us know the exact date by which we would receive it!

*Also, while we waited ten days for the adapter, we tried all sorts of jugaad measures, but unfortunately none of them worked. We tried a step down transformer, a friend's XBox adapter, a regular power plug without voltage conversion, just looking at the gaming system for hours, making trips to the courier shop! (We just could not buy a new original cord since it was not available in my city)
I do think we blew up the original adapter in the process too!

All said and done, now that I've played it. The Kinect is FANTASTIC! Love the technology! :)

I've written down this post just to try and make the solution to this issue more visible on the internetz. During my searches for a proper solution, the above-mentioned blog was the only place where I could find this solution.
So now that I have tried and tested the solution, why not share it with more poor souls who might be looking to find a voltage solution for their US-bought-but-to-be-used-in-India XBox 360.

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