Sell Dell

So Dell announces a luxury line — its Lexus — with better computers and better service: “But Dell says the real feeling of luxury will come from its customer service. Buyers of the XPS laptops will be connected with a customer service representative within five minutes of calling…” Which is to say that all the rest of Dell’s customers get crappy customer service and long waits and that in its other models, it doesn’t sell quality and only sells price.

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  • Mike G

    So they finally noticed Apple’s fat margins and decided “Hey, we could keep 40% of the purchase price too!”

  • http://www.scottrandolph.net Scott Randolph

    I have very interesting stories from sales reps within the organization concerning “regular” customer service. Their focus is on their business clients, and are actually reprimanded at times for going out of their way to help someone who bought a lowly $700 desktop.

    Infuriating isn’t it? If the same sales rep hadn’t swung me a great deal, I’d have totally bought my new laptop from anyone else.

  • korutenshi

    Why you people dont custom build your own PCs is beyond me. The modularity of PC parts makes installation a breeze, and chances are you wont have to build it yourself as most computer establishments will provide that service. And it seems you already have issues with customer support so the lack of it will most likely be a benefit. I find if something breaks, I replace it…that simple, and it also affords me an opportunity to upgrade as well. This is also a better option if you are aesthetically inclined to get a PC that looks as good as it runs.

    Here is a good walkthru by Intel on building a custom PC…
    http://www.intel.com/personal/build/index.htm?ppc_cid=ggl|persnlcomp_build_pc|k15BE|s

    And besides, these machines arent going away, so learning the ins and outs is ultimately in your best interest…how does that saying go? “Teach a man to fish….” ;P

  • http://www.buzzmachine.com Jeff Jarvis

    just testing. nevermind the man behind the curtain.

  • http://www.smallbiztechnology.com Ramon Ray

    Jeff I STRONGLY disagree with you. Hotels do this why not Dell. I WELCOME this from all vendors. Buy a server for $500 and get “regular” support – 90 days, mail in and etc. Buy a server for $1,000 and get FULL support. If there is a problem – any problem we’ll be there to make sure it is fixed. Period.

    When one’s Mercedes Benz needs a repair, many of the dealers clean the car too! Do they do this at other dealers? No.

    Ramon Ray, http://www.smallbiztechnology.com

  • Brian Swenson

    This has had me fired up all morning. I read both the NYT article and the story in the Wall Street Journal. I can’t believe that Dell is openly admitting that you need to spend $4k on their “Lexus” brand to get customer service that’s worth a damn. I got a dimension desktop about 3 months ago, that got up around $1000 by the time it was built, and have had zero luck with it, and have spend countless hours with three different Dell support people named “Steve.”

    Customer service should focus on one thing and one thing alone — the customer. Reminds me of the Orwell classic “Animal Farm” — “All Animals are created equal…but some are more equal than others.” I’d like to thank Michael Dell publicly letting us know that he feels the same way.

    Well it’s nice to know that Dell thinks catering to this high profit niche market will make them money, but what about all of the people who have bought Dell in that past that aren’t privvy to this “XPS” hotline? Apparently, we’re left still talking to the “Steves.”

    This is just disgusting. Sorry — had to share with you.

  • http://www.misterorange.com Evan Erwin

    The difference is Ray, they always touted their “Award Winning Service” and then they pull the rug out from existing customers.

    Apple has gouged from day one. They also get you with the “Apple Care” protection warranty, $350 or so post-purchase, but even without it you can still get excellent warranty service or pay-per-incident. This is the difference in paying $700 and $2,000 for a PC, and the difference between a company who has kept up their service end of the bargain (Apple) vs. those who have not (guess who).

  • http://www.scottrandolph.net Scott Randolph

    the other difference is that their pc is the same pile of parts as any other pc….where a benz is more luxurious, better built, etc…

    dell is like the kia of pc’s. cheap enough to not be to bothered that they suck.

    (of course, i think kia’s are actually pretty decent and come with a great warranty)

  • http://www.scottrandolph.net Scott Randolph

    Ramon –

    it also sounds as though you work with the business end. they care about those customers.

  • http://www.laurencehaughton.com laurence haughton

    Actually Ramon Ray a lot of auto dealers will clean your car following a service visit.

    The fact is they have done the math on client retention and found that “not” disappointing customers (and even delighting them) is a good strategy for building profitability.

    High tech companies are beginning to discover this too.

  • http://www.beatcanvas.com Brett Rogers

    Axiom #1 in business: Your best customer is the one that you already have.

    In addition to trying to shore up business with future, higher-paying prospects, they should work to satisfy existing customers. Word of mouth – it’ll make or break you. And it will eventually get around to those who might have otherwise paid for high-end service.

    I have no problem with them tiering their service, but whoever had this brainchild should be canned for misleading the marketplace after a slew of bad publicity. This will only spawn more bad press.

    Michael Dell is starting to look less like a genius and more like Ted Waitt of Gateway.

  • http://unbeknownst.net KirkH

    Dell has low prices because they have bad service. It’s their niche, they’ll never say that publicly but it’s true. We know this where I work but still buy Dell because it’s much cheaper. Sure, they screw up every once in a while and it’s a pain but for us it’s worth it.

    Luckily we live in a capitalist society so they’ll go out of business if their service sucks AND their prices aren’t competitive.

  • http://www.thelooneys.com/blogs/rice/default.aspx Jon

    I love Dell, personally, because they’ve had to replace my entire computer twice, my DVD drive three times, my monitor once and my graphics card once. Who else out there gives you a completely free computer almost every year? Thank you Dell, for making such shoddy products!

  • Marthirial

    The fact is that first-time buyers of computers or individuals with resistance to go one step further into learning the basics about them (75% of Apple market) want to pay as less as possible and then get prime customer service for issues that mostly time have nothing to do with bad quality but unexpected glitches common in these days systems.

    The basics are simple. If you are computer dummy, you will pay as a dummy for troubleshooting, maintenance and upgrading. That is the price for the luxury of ignorance.

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  • http://lesterblog.blogspot.com Jon Lester

    At least Apple tries to make machines dependable in the first place, minimizing the need for customer service that they also provide. I also feel it’s tacky that Dell seems to be admitting their other products are inferior and therefore they won’t waste too much tech support time dealing with those machines’ users.

    One of the many appeals of retrocomputing is the fact that, once upon a time, everyone expected their machine to work right out of the box, as advertised. And as korutenshi says, if you want to use PC’s then you’re better off using open architecture to your advantage.

  • Jill C

    This is no surprise at all. Anyone that has worked in the IT industry and had the pleasure of dealing with Dells customer “support” knows that it is sorely lacking. Now that they are openly admitting their inadequacy and practically putting the reality on the table perhaps some people will wake up and make a better decision in their computer purchases.

  • Robert

    I do not see what the big deal is. Dell already had a top-of-the-line brand called Precision. See link:

    http://www1.us.dell.com/content/products/compare.aspx/workstations?c=us&cs=555&l=en&s=biz

    Seems like all they did was take the Precision models, make the cases look a little nicer, and label them XPS. Whoop-dee-doo.

  • Mike G

    I feel like the only honest company in this whole business has been Apple. Yes, they charge a premium, and at least these days, what they make works extremely well and lasts and lasts (longer than it probably needs to).

    PC makers, on the other hand, have been engaged in a race to the bottom, cutting everything they can to produce the $399 PC that turns out, quel surprise, to be an underpowered mess. (Bring a Dell up to spec with a comparable Mac and you’ll rarely save more than a couple of hundred bucks.) Buyers lapped this up and pretended to believe that for two cents above cost they deserved world-class customer service. Well, guess what, when you buy on price you don’t get world-class customer service.

    The most honest thing Dell did was spin off what ought to be standard customer service into a separate product. (Then they refused to actually deliver what they promised, but that’s another story.) That at least acknowledged that a rock bottom computer, like a $49 VCR, simply can’t afford to be as reliable and to be supported as fully as the one you bought 15 years ago.

  • http://overtaken.blogmosis.com Matt

    I’m just amazed by this. I’ve purchased five Dell’s in the last five years and haven’t called customer service a single time. I’m just positive that user error could never, ever be a problem when dealing with IT products.

    The nice thing about living in a semi-free market is that a company can offer a premium service (hello NYT) for those who can both afford it and happen to desire it. Pray tell what PC company you’ve had better experiences with. Gateway? HP/Compaq? Don’t say Apple (, they’re a niche, and they always will be.

  • http://www.clickto.net Deanna

    Dell support is great compared to their horrible DFI support. I bought a $400 system for my daughter and put the purchase on my “Dell Preferred Accoutnt” knowing the interest rate would be usury. Wow was I shocked when I got the first statement. 21 % interest. I sent in a $100 payment each month. The interest rate was raised with EVERY statement until it hit 29.99% on the fourth statement, which I paid off in full.

    The Dell Financial Support Rep gave me BS about Fed Reserve going up each month and other nonsense. I have very good credit and told him they are crooks and cancelled my account. I will NEVER every buy Dell again. They are bait and switchers and make their reall money on finance.

  • http://overtaken.blogmosis.com Matt

    I assume then that you’ve cancelled your credit cards, gas cards, car loans, etc. After all, those sneaky bastards make all of their money off of finance charges.

    If you didn’t know the rate was 21% until you got your first statement you might not have read the finance agreement all the way through.

  • former dell tech

    At least they finally offer the ability for a normal consumer to have decent customer support. Previously Dell Gold Tech Support was only available to business customers only.

  • Mike G

    “Don’t say Apple (, they’re a niche, and they always will be.”

    But they have 75% of the market– oh, you mean IN COMPUTERS.

    Well, I suppose that’s one way to look at it. Another way might be to say, the era of the standalone dedicated computer is coming to an end– not that they’ll go away, but that “computers” are becoming so many more things than word processor/email stations on desks. And as “computers” becomes not one device but a category as big as “consumer electronics,” then being dominant in desktop computers will become sort of like being dominant in tube TVs– one niche among many.

    Or not. All I know is, it’s foolish to say what will “always be” about computing when it’s changing before our very eyes.

  • http://overtaken.blogmosis.com Matt

    Yes, the Appleistas have been saying the same thing ever since I bought my Apple IIE. Obviously, there is more to computing than your desktop, but the subject of all of Jeff’s anti-Dell rants have surrounded problems with his laptop, not a PDA, or an MP3 player.

    Maybe the “standalone” PC is coming to an end, although I find that hard to swallow until there is some sort of universal connectivity. I’ve watched too many companies get burned buying thin-client type boxes, thinking they’d run everything off of a central server, to get really excited about the concept.

    If by 75% of the market, you’re talking about IPods, then good for them. Being number one with a personal gadget is great (Just ask the folks who manufactured the Walkman). Being the number one supplier to large portion of really large corporations is even better. In the first quarter of ’05, Apple sold $3.24 Billion worth of IPods and Macs to the whole world. Dell sold a bit more than 5% of that total just to one company (I’ll let you guess which one).

  • Mike G

    So the iPod alone is worth about a quarter of all the computers Dell sells? And it’s basically one product in a few styles. Well, that’s my point right there. Things are changing fast and I’d worry more if I were Dell, leading maker of a commodity, than if I were Apple, innovator of new categories.

  • Superwoody

    Learn To Build Your Own PC: http://www.intel.com/personal/build/index.htm?ppc_cid=ggl|persnlcomp_build_pc|k15BE|s

    Then order your parts here: http://www.newegg.com/index.asp?DEPA=0&CMP=KNC-overturesmx&ATT=homepage

    Keep that Dell monitor and start from scratch if you need a new PC. But if you need a Laptop, try IBM. They’re more, but they used to be bullet proof, I haven’t used one in about 4-5 years. I have a Sony laptop now and it has been good but not for what they cost. I just lucked up on a deal from CC when a college girl took it in for repairs and couldn’t wait for it to be sent to/from Sony so she opted to “trade up” with some kind of plan they carry.

    I didn’t care, I saved about half price on the thing so I was happy. (I can’t say “I didn’t care” anymore without thinking of that credit card comercial, “it lifts and seperates” but I digress)

    “Parts is Parts” isn’t all true either when you are comparing the regular Dells to the XPS models. Some of those XPS models have $1000 processors in them!! http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16819116214 So as the old saying goes, “You (sometimes) Get What You Pay For” ….

  • Avatar

    Well… yes. If you buy a brand known for bad service and low prices, you will get a low price, and you will get bad service. Not really any way around that.

    Fact is, good computer service is really expensive. You’ve got to pay intelligent people to sit around and talk to people who are, in essence, morons on the subject in question. (Think how unfriendly car service would be if, instead of taking it in to a dealership, you placed a phone call and were talked through the repairs by a mechanic!) It’s -the- scut work of the IT industry. Good people don’t want to do it, bad people aren’t any good at it, outsourcing it to India doesn’t help much. If your business model is based on selling lots of computers with only a little profit per, you -really don’t want- customers calling in and taking up hours of time with your tech support people, because it doesn’t take long until their sale becomes a net loss.

    If you expect to get Mercedes engineering, Ferrari performance, and Lexus service, don’t buy a Ford! (heh, sorry, too long on the car lot today.)

    What Dell is doing is segmenting its market. Some people will pay significantly more for a “luxury” brand and the service that goes with it. Others will pay more for the service alone. And now they’ve got a good way to shunt those (valuable) customers out of the standard customer pool.

  • penny

    “We do not believe there is a viable alternative place for the I.F.C. at the World Trade Center site,” the center’s executives, Tom A. Bernstein, Peter W. Kunhardt and Richard J. Tofel, said in the statement. “We consider our work, therefore, to have been brought to an end.”

    Got that right. Not much foot traffic in Nowheresville. Maybe a website with linked to Kos will help.

  • penny

    Sorry right post at the wrong spot.

  • http://www.luxurypc.com Ali

    This is a cynical ploy to destroy the niche market that SavRow, Alienware and VoodooPC have been in for years now. Dell is the un cool uncle at the party and they think that they can both capture higher margins and justify giving tiered support to their clients…

    I think they are just trying to water down the term luxury or high end computing… http://www.luxurypc.com/?p=30

  • Don

    Yeah I gotta disagree with this one. If you want quality you have to pay for it. Don’t expect full service from a waiter if you go to McDonalds. Just because one company offers two completely different services does not mean your entitled to both of them automatically.

  • http://www.thecricketcage.com Syl

    I’m really getting tired of this jihad against Dell. I’ve been dealing with them since 1994. Four desktops. No major problems. Great customer service.

    Some people just get angry that tech support goes through their procedures step-by-step rather than listening to their complaints. Jeff is not a computer expert and should admit it. His expertise in other areas does not cross over.

  • Robert

    One has too look past the customer service issues and look at the core of the problem. Dell’s development budget is a fraction of that of HP or IBM, so this means that Dell products are rushed through product group (development) in order to be first to market. Dell (like other companies) do risk analysis on issues that arise with their products during the development cycle.

    Unfortunately, these risk assessments are geared more to revenue and not to customer experience. This being said corners are cut in the development process and potential issues are written off as an acceptable risks, thus creating a sub-par product. A Dell Product Group VP once said, “perception is more important than reality”.

  • http://detailedrecruiter.blogspot.com SSG B

    I dunno if Jeff is capable of saying that his expertise in one area doesn’t convey automatic expertise in all areas. I’ve watched the quality of Jeff’s work decline as he’s become more and more a darling of the media he wants to change. Reading Buzzmachine reminds me more and more of reading the op-eds in the newspapers I no longer read. I don’t think I like that. The whole “Dell Hell” thing strikes me as him being a prima donna and someone who is a bit too fascinated with his soap box than what he’s actually ranting against.

  • former dell tech

    How many times do people post the ‘why don’t you build your own machine?’ What about laptops? Ever build one of those? Not only that when the rubber meets the road, its the price that people look for. Once you add software to the equation, building your own machine is not cheaper. Yet I do agree that it is the better way.

    BTW who do like for laptops? I own an HP (17″). Support is OK.

  • Buddha

    I have spent 20 years in semiconductor manufacturing. On several occasions I have tested Dell motherboards, replaced under warranty by Dell, to verify any problems with the boards. It was obvious that price was the driving issue with these components. They were built in a part of the world where labor costs are low, which is okay in itself, but they were shoddily built. Components didn’t fit well and the boards just ‘looked’ cheap. The showstopper for me was the number of boards that had failed for ‘no video’. On some of those boards the reason was unavoidably obvious, or should have been. Only half of the video connector was there. The female half where the cable connects was missing! They should have been mechanical failures, but we wasted time doing a time consuming electrical test to verify the failure. What is far worse is that those parts had gone through numerous hands and several layers of QC before they were finally shipped to a customer. They must not even turn on the computers to see if they work when they finish final assembly. Statistical Process Control, which is basic to high tech manufacturing, says that when you find such defective parts, you recover all of the bad parts, send the entire lot back to the supplier, and get a new one. That Dell’s supply channel and manufacturing operations didn’t react to the parts at all, it took customers to do that, says volumes about bad management practices. They are working to price alone, not quality, not total cost. The entire cost of recovering those bad parts found by customers should be added in to the cost of manufacturing as well as some portion of the cost of the Service operation. FWIW, Dell is adding 5,000 people to it’s Service group, raising that number to 15,000. That is a huge minus to the bottom line.

  • Ashish

    hi, i have been using dell for 3 years now and have not faced a single problem till date, the dell works absolutely fine and my next computer will be a dell for sure. not every one but the very few users who have a technical acumen would understand that all the problems for which dell is held responsible are user borne, moreover people say that the services are deteriorating day by day which is not true, does any one realize how many threats like spywares and viruses we have now and did we ever have them earlier, problem like these are users responsibility, also earlier we had never connected numerous devices to our computer like we do now, computer technology had drastically changed and if u are a novice user wihout the technical knowledge then be ready to face the problems, most users do not understand what spywares are and how to stay safe, they would follow unsafe net browsing practises and when the system crashes then blame the manufacturer, people who understand this would support me because everything comes for money and if u do not know something as minor as burning a cd then be ready to pay the price for this ignorance. better services require better money and the price at which a dell comes is absolutely incredible so dell does rocks till date as it is catering to every segment of society and not just the rich and the affluent !!!

  • J Simpkins

    WHATEVER……SERVICE IS A PRODUCT….THEY SHOULD CHARGE MORE…..THIS IS THE PROBLEM WITH MOST CONSUMERS….THEY THINK THAT SERVICE IS A GIVEN…IT IS NOT…DELL IS NOT A CUSTOMER SERVICE ORGANIZATION…DELL IS NOT CELEBRITY CRUISE LINERS…IT IS NOT A COUNTRY CLUB….WAKE UP IDIOTS…

  • Michael Denial

    -”J Simpkins Says:
    October 20th, 2005 at 3:18 pm”-

    “WHATEVER”
    _________________________________________________

    Hey Simp’, you should have stopped at that, up there. It was just as inaffectual.

    To the point then, DELL provides pricey unreliable [not fit for the purpose] components, ergo, there is a degree of Customer Support that will naturally be required for said sub-standard products, agreed? DELL knows it, why don’t you? Perhaps DELL’s intention all along was to pay lip service to its support of its customers on the back of inferior performing products. What say you?

    Example; How many times would you say it is acceptable that the same problem gets dealt with in exactly the same way… the *wrong *way, mind, but the same way nonetheless.
    * Denotes; ‘failed to be ‘supported’ and did not lead to ‘Customer Satisfaction’’.

  • John H

    Well it’s nice to know that Dell thinks catering to this high profit niche market will make them money, but what about all of the people who have bought Dell in that past that aren’t privvy to this “XPS” hotline?

    I wouldn’t lose too much sleep over that thought, Brian. A large percentge of the people they are trying to sell the XPS line to, guys like me, enthusiasts, build their own machines. I’d say in the high 90% range.

    I will say one good thing about Dell, they send me allot of side work because people just give up trying to use their super awesome, great warranties.

  • http://tomjelenvirtuals.com Tom Jelen

    Purchased a High end XPS w/500gb drive all the trimmings in July and by Oct 10 days after the warranty ends’s the hard drive fails ?? What give’s Dell sells a machine that has the life span of a throw away camera, and you would think that they would At the least cover a drive for more than 90 days. I guess the CEO’s need to fund their pensions some how by taking the public. Next time Ill pay somebody else to build something that Stand’s Behind their product . All there creditability just flushed down gutter any one need a 500gb paper weight?

  • Willmark

    I love the logic of “I have never had an issue with Dell, therefore the user must be at fault” that is being put forth by several posters in this thread.

    Being heavily involved with tech support I will freely admit most user have no clue what they are doing, but we are not talking about users here. The real issue is Dell. Dell makes such shoddy computers that even a Banana Jr 2000 woudl be better. And just because you bandy about: “I’ve never had a problem with my Dell” doesn’t mean that plenty of other people don’t either”. We replace so many Dell HDs and motherboards its sad.

    I mean get real selling a computer for $399, and people expect it to be quality? Get a grip people. My company buys somewhat better than that and they are still crap.

  • kathy n

    Speaking of Dell Hell, I have been in it since Nov. 9th with no satisfaction. I ordered a nice new Dell on Nov 9th and it was slated to arrive via UPS on Nov. 16. Only the monitor arrived. No PC. Finally on the 18th UPS told me and Dell that the system was lost and to file a claim and tracer. Since the evening of the 16th (when my local ups already had told me it was lost but to wait til the 17th) I called Dell and got the Indians. I have called them literally 40 times a day since and have had no satisfaction. On the 22nd of Nov I finally was able to find someone in this country that claimed to be from their executive offices that would expedite my refund (by this time I never wanted to deal with Dell again and did not want another computer. They had refused to send me a new one until UPS either paid them back for the lost one or found the one I had ordered.

    Anyway the person in this country has been promising me since the 22nd that I would get my refund overnite and today is Dec 3 and no refund!! The monitor went back to them 10 over a week ago (and that took some doing!!! the indians never sent ups to pick it up!!) and ups found the other computer and returned it to Dell 5 days ago. Still no refund!! My only consolation is that on Dec. 22nd my bank card is going to credit me back inspite of Dell. Unfortunately my bank said they had to give them 30 days to credit me back after I put it in the dispute dept. Don’t wait to dispute the charge with your bank if you have charged one. Do it right away because it is a long wait to get any satisfaction. The new date for my refund to go thru is next monday but I am not holding my breath. I have heard this since Nov. 22nd. I will never do business again with Dell. In fact I bought a new HP the other day and it is wonderful.

  • Willmark

    Or better yet, yet another reason to not buy a Dell.

    To all: This doesn’t come down to a Mac or PC thing either there are plenty of other PC manufacturers out there that may quite good PCs. Anything is better than Dell who is nothing more than the Walmart of computers.

  • Joe Employee

    Let me first say that Yes, Dell’s support has declined. No employee can honestly argue against that statement. That should pacify half of you.

    (Let me also say that with rare exception, 99.9% of support agents you speak to really want to fix your problems. Accents are a fact of life and they feel as disappointed as you that they couldn’t clearly communicate their instructions to customers. I have witnessed Indian-ethnicity support agents in our U.S. call centers cry because they were reamed by callers within seconds of answering the call before they could even finish their introduction. Be respectful and courteous and you will be treated the same. If you cannot understand the technician, you’re always free to request a call back from another person or say goodbye and try calling again; No reason to be disrespectful over something that person can’t change.)

    It’s worth noting that until earlier this year, Dell was the only company in the industry to offer lifetime tech and software support. Think about that; Back in 2000 when I worked phone support, we took calls on systems built in ’94 running Win3.x or even DOS, we helped grandmothers and aspiring PC techs rebuild and troubleshoot their systems and taught them where to find drivers and how to install them — All this years after their hardware warranties had expired. No other company, even Microsoft itself, does this for life (for free). In response to industry-wide cost-cutting, pressure from the Lenovo and HPaq’s of the world, Dell’s sought ways to stay on top. Enter OVERSEAS SUPPORT, LIMITED-TIME WARRANTIES and the $399 SYSTEM. These are the big 3 initiatives that kept Dell afloat for stockholders and have simultaneously caused the deterioration in support that blogs like this love to dissect.

    $399 systems mean profits almost literally in the single-digit dollars range, but it gets millions of systems out the door. That 1 in 50 customer who needs support will get their answer, but now only for 90 days (standard default warranty) or 1-4 years, depending on which options the customer *CHOSE* when buying the system. You really do get what you pay for. You have to realize that paying $399 for a computer with a 90 day warranty is a great deal, but you’re taking a voluntary risk by foregoing bells and whistles, in this case an extended warranty and/or U.S. support from certified technicians (Gold Tech. Support). Expecting more is simply unreasonable. You don’t buy a 3.99 meal at McDonald’s and expect silverware, steak meals or a waiter to tend to your needs. However, you CAN opt to buy an extended warranty or simply one that specifically offers U.S.-based support. They’re highlighted and bolded in the online configurator as upsells, so no one can claim they didn’t know better support was available.

    You have to envy Apple to an extent. They have saved customers from themselves by including high-dollar support into their profit margins whether customers want it or not. Dell could make Gold Technical Support the default option and automatically add $250 to every system. What would you have? Apple.

    However, Dell realizes that tech-savvy customers don’t want to pay for tech support when they know they could build their own systems for $399. So Dell offers the same or (arguably) better quality system with minimal support and instantly wins that customer base. What you have in blogs like this is folks choosing standard (minimum-cost) support and expecting GOLD service. Dell simply starts at the bare minimum and leaves it to customers to choose for themselves. Blogs like this are only cursing them for giving customers options.

    If choice scares you, get an Apple, or vote Republican. (kidding)

  • E.G. Feldman

    I must express my surprise that there our others having tech,repair,and replacement problems with “Dell”. I state this in a total sarcasatic manner! I had six major incidents since purchasing a Dell Diminsion 3000 which had upgrades included in the price along with 3 year limited warranty.
    The desktop was delivered on April 27,2005, and I spent a total of 22 hours calling Dell,waiting on hold and last but not least being dis- connected bye tech. support,customer care and repairs 17 times. Every
    component of the desktop was replaced a very intelligent agent who is sub-contracted by Dell to install the refurbushed parts(ex.motherboard,160mb hard drive,every internal part possible from the chip to the fans) and on Nov.3,2007 seven months after my purchase the computer DIED! I was given a service exchange and 26 days later to my surprise I recieved a (NEW?) E310 desktop. I had gotten a better model than the Dell 3000 but I discoved there was a CATCH 22. Since I was told by 3 techs.and someone from the service dept. that my desktop I was going to recieve would have the same specs or better than the orginal model there should have been no problems! The E310′s shipping invoice nothing concerning the 3 year warranty, nor did it meet the specs as they promiosed me when I called or even when a tech. called to ask me if everything was OK! When I stated that the (2) 512MB modules from the Dell 3000 were not conpatable with the E310- ddr2-sdram vs ddr-sdram in the 3000.I was tranferred to 4 depts. each telling me that a Senior supervisor had to evaluate this problem.
    I have decided that it is not worth my time or effort to spend valuable time trying to have a discussion with a company that is totally unaware that the average consumer is the providing this Corporation with a base to have individuals to upgrade to higher priced units. When you lost touch with the public,and fail to listen to problems, you eventually lose the bottom line and you had better sell a great amount of the $3500 systems because you are losing the high profit margins on the mass produced low end models that Dell used to be able to turn over it’s money.
    I am sorry that I was so foolish in purchasing this desktop in the first place,and I feel even worse reading over my comments because so many other people have had experiences that make mine seem meaningless!

  • Willmark

    “You have to envy Apple to an extent. They have saved customers from themselves by including high-dollar support into their profit margins whether customers want it or not. Dell could make Gold Technical Support the default option and automatically add $250 to every system. What would you have? Apple.”

    You have to add a heck of a lot more than that to make it to Apple’s level.

  • James Devine

    Dell Financial is practicing usury. I’ve been satisfied with the product I bought but there financial practices are ridiculous and, I believe, illegal. I will be closing my account by the end of the month and will never have anything to do with these turds again.

  • Edwin Kok

    I had a new Dimension 5150 after one day the WindowsXp Home edition is crashed.
    I need new audio and new Ati Dell drivers. I can not find the drivers on the Ati or Dell site.

  • Edwin Kok

    I had an new Dimension 5150 after one day the WindowsXp Home edition is crashed.
    I need new audio and new Ati Dell drivers . I can not find the drivers on the Ati or Dell site

  • edwin kok

    234353sarertet

  • M. de Carnesie

    My family is on our fifth Dell, three in current use. Dell was the Rolls Royce of
    small business and home computers, along with the best tech support — note I speak in the PAST TENSE. In the past two – three years their customer service has sunk to the lowest possible level, and of the three PC’s we now have, only the oldest, an Inspiron 8200, has not had hardware replacements.

    The accent of the Indian techs is not the biggest problem, it is their refusal to open their ears and listen. I would like to go there with a baseball bat, not to
    harm them, but to make the listen. When I wrote a letter of complaint to Dell I got back a canned reply about their great service.

    Anyway, Dell has lost a family of customers as well as a small business customer, forever.

  • Randy

    I have been a long time user of Dell computers – BUT NO MORE. It cannot be poor planning that would cause such a premier companies tech support to plunge so quickly. Had to be a conscience business decision – what a rip!!!!