Essay about Microsoft Xbox

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Usability Testing on Microsoft Xbox ™

Product usability testing has been around for quite a while now for the sole purpose of providing the consumers with the best product a company can. Some companies hire specific testing consultants who specialize in product testing and other companies just release beta versions of their product to a small market and collect feedback. Companies like Sony or Nintendo hire companies that test their products and make sure there are no problems with the product. Software companies, on the other hand, release test versions, also known as beta versions, of their products and improve their final product based on the feedback from the beta users.

There are many products that
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After Microsoft released the Xbox, the public rushed to purchase the video game console. Almost immediately, complaints start to appear about the console. A small percentage of Xbox units were defective as stated in an article titled, “Microsoft Addresses Report on Xbox Defects,” by Shahed Ahmed. Defects in a small percentage of any products sold happen often. However, another complaint surfaced shortly after the Xbox was released: the controller was over sized and the button configuration was inconvenient for certain games. Microsoft quickly addressed this complaint by releasing a redesigned controller that was smaller and had a more convenient button configuration. The release of the new controller Microsoft is well documented in the article written by Giancarlo Varanini titled, “Redesigned Xbox Controller in the Works.”

The Microsoft Xbox is a great example of how a product is never perfect, no matter how much it is tested prior its release. Product usability testing will never catch all the flaws, in my opinion, because either the test groups are not diverse enough or there is not enough time to efficiently test a given product. However, increasing the variety of test subjects along with the size of the test groups would certainly reduce the problem,


1. Ahmed, S. (2000, December 19). Gamespot News: Xbox Product Testing Initiated. Retrieved from
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