The latest Xbox, the Xbox Series X, has finally reached the market, along with its rival from PlayStation, the PlayStation 5. The Xbox Series X got mostly positive reviews when it was released this week.
And now, the company is telling users to avoid vaping near their Xbox.
“We can’t believe we have to say this, but please do not blow vape smoke into your Xbox Series X,” the official Xbox Twitter account tweeted Wednesday. A subsequent tweet requested that “for any non-vape related support questions please check out the info here,” while linking to the company’s tech support page.
What’s with the strange tweet?
According to a GameSpot story, a series of viral videos have circulated, in the early days of the Series X’s availability, showing “plumes of smoke” coming out of the console’s air vent.
“Multiple people have replicated the smoking effect by blowing vape smoke through the Xbox, prompting Microsoft itself to address the situation in a tweet that looks like a real non sequitur,” the GameSpot story reported. However, multiple media outlets appear to have concluded that the smoke effect is fake, and Microsoft has backed that up.
“We take all product safety reports seriously and our products meet or exceed industry standards,” Microsoft said in a statement to GameSpot. “Findings from our initial investigations do not align with some of the claims being broadly reported, however we are in the process of investigating further.”
It appears that users are merely putting vape smoke through their Xbox machine, and trying to pass that off as the gaming console itself catching on fire or smoking for some other reason. Why anyone would put a brand new, very expensive appliance at risk like that is an entirely different question.
The Xbox Series X is part of the fourth generation of the Xbox, alongside the Series S, which is smaller and has less processing power. The Series X launched at a price point of $499, while the Series S costs $299.
The head of the Xbox division, Phil Spencer, said earlier this week that the recent launch of the new consoles was the biggest in Xbox history.
“Thank you for supporting the largest launch in Xbox history. In 24 hrs more new consoles sold, in more countries, than ever before,” Spencer tweeted. “We’re working with retail to resupply as quickly as possible. You continue to show us the connective power of play is more important than ever.”
That high demand has led to a predictable backlog of orders. Amazon has reportedly told some customers that their preorders of the machines may be delayed until as late as December 31.
Stephen Silver, a technology writer for The National Interest, is a journalist, essayist and film critic, who is also a contributor to Philly Voice, Philadelphia Weekly, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency, Living Life Fearless, Backstage magazine, Broad Street Review and Splice Today. The co-founder of the Philadelphia Film Critics Circle, Stephen lives in suburban Philadelphia with his wife and two sons. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenSilver.