I've had quite a few members of the public approaching me at work in regards to a recent episode of Watchdog that was aired on BBC a couple of weeks ago.
For those un-aware BBC's Watchdog aired an investigation about the 'Yellow Light of Death' (the standby light flickers a yellow colour, telling the user their is a fault) that can sometimes occur on Playstation 3s. According to the BBCs research, 12,500 PS3s have had the yellow light of death. This figure is believed to be drawn from Sony's own figures that state 0.5% of the 2.5 million PS3s sold in the UK have developed a fault. As part of the programme, they offered members of the public a free repair service (2 guys, in a van, outside Sony's UK Head Office). The main point of all this is that outside of the consoles normal one year warranty, if you want your console fixed, you'll need to shell out some cash to Sony to get it fixed.
However, the programme wasn't without its inaccuracies, and has drawn critiscm from people within the games industry (check out this article for a response for industry magazine MCV). What was not stated was that out of all those faulty PS3s they didn't all have the same fault and didn't always have a flickering yellow light. And, lets not look over the fact that 0.5% of 2.5 million is a very small amount of faulty consoles!
Watchdog have in the past reported on the Xbox 360, first of all in regards to the '3 Red Lights' issue, and again for the console scratching discs. However Microsoft have since extended warranties on their consoles to 3 years (well, in regards to the '3 Red Lights' problem anyway). Sony haven't (as of yet) extended their warranties for any fault on the Playstation 3s.
From working in a game store point of view, atleast for our store anyway, we don't see that many faulty PS3s. The most faulty PS3 consoles we are starting to see are the original 60GB PS3, with faulty lasers. I've heard different stories from different people in regards to out of warranty consoles.
So...what can you do if your PS3 breaks outside of your one year warranty? You'll need to give Sony a call. For about £125 they will replace your console.
Although the percentage of broken consoles is quite small in comparision to the amount of PS3s out there being played, and that the yellow light dosen't just appear for just one specific fault...I do believe they should be looking to do more for owners of the 60Gb version of the console, as faulty 60GBs are getting all the more common.
Should Sony replace/repair broken machines with the yellow light without cost from you..the consumer? Comment this article with your thoughts!
For a run-down of the BBC Watchdog PS3 Story, hit this link!