This comes straight out of the I Can't Believe Anyone Pays For That department. According to reports that've been confirmed by Best Buy, one of the services the company's Geek Squad offers is firmware upgrades for the PS3 for the low, low price of $30. If you've ever flashed a PS3
, you know that the process is dirt-simple and virtually impossible to screw up.
Statistically speaking, this isn't a task idiots could do. It's a task idiots do do.
Short of a mid-flash earthquake, llama stampede, or meteor strike, anyone can handle it. What originally flashed across radars was Best Buy's decision to sell "pre-configured" PS3's for $329 rather than the $299 standard retail. Asked to explain the value of said service, Best Buy responded with the following:
"Best Buy’s Geek Squad offers services to support virtually all the gear we sell – and gaming consoles are no exception. This service has been available to our customers for nearly two years. While many gamers can handle firmware upgrades easily on their own, those customers who do want help can get it from Geek Squad, and we continue to evaluate this offering to ensure it meets their needs. The service goes beyond a firmware updates, and includes user account setup, parental control setup and other components."
Coming from a company that typically charges $149-$299 for spyware removal
and $149 to setup
* a computer in-house, we can't say we're surprised at BB's willingness to profit from the stupidity of others. Still, if we ran the company, we'd sleep better at night with lower fees and more frequent display of a large, hand-painted sign that read: "You Can Do This
Yourself. Really. We Promise."
* - That $149 buys you cable routing (if you provide your own cable ties), installation of one piece of software, installation of one peripheral, and the configuration of one email account. And for just $99 more, Best Buy will transfer up to 20GB of data from one computer to another. Just $99!