Coleco’s ADAM & Microsoft’s Xbox 360: things that make you go ‘hmm’


ADAM Xbox 360Those that know me know that I am a fan of Microsoft products.  I write about, read about them, own them, and use them.  Of course I am into the ColecoVision & Coleco ADAM as well.  I recently thought about the similarity of the Xbox 360 & ADAM computer.  Stay with me here as I will try to show how they are alike.

Coleco had much success with their game console the ColecoVision which was released in 1982.  Consumers raved about it.  Then Coleco tried to get their hands in the computer business by producing the ADAM.  Unfortunately, its creation was rushed.  As a result, nearly 50 percent (some say more) of ADAMs were returned as defective.

Red RingMicrosoft released a game console called the Xbox back in 2001.  Like the ColecoVision, consumers were very excited and happy about Microsoft’s gaming console.  When the Xbox 360 debuted in 2005, there were many owners complaining of something called the “red ring of death”.  Basically there was a flaw in the Xbox 360 that would cause it to stop working and a red circle L.E.D. to light up around the power button.  Microsoft exchanged these bad ones for devices that worked.  It has been estimated that somewhere between 25 to 50 percent of 360’s failed.  (Keep in mind, these are first generation 360s.  The 360 Slim, which came later, was a much better piece of hardware, with very little being returned as defective.)

Those first generation Xbox 360s would have bankrupt many companies.  Microsoft, however, has many divisions which bring in record profits year after year, such as Office and Windows.  Coleco was no where near as big as Microsoft and could not rely on their other divisions to save them.  While the Cabbage Patch Kids earned huge profits for Coleco, it was only popular for the first year it debuted.  Coleco had too much debt and not enough product to save itself.  And unlike Microsoft, they dropped their video game division at the first sign of trouble.

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