WSJ: Dell’s back-to-school business may be at risk

“Dell Inc., while scrambling to replace millions of laptop computer batteries, faces another challenge — salvaging its back-to-school business,” Don Clark and Christopher Lawton report for The Wall Street Journal.

Clark and Lawton report, “The No. 1 personal computer maker, though dominant in sales to companies, was already facing tough competition in the consumer market before announcing the massive recall late Monday. Now some analysts predict that negative publicity will cause more buyers in the key summer selling season to shun Dell in favor of other alternatives.”

“‘They will be more likely to consider other options,’ said Samir Bhavnani, director of research at Current Analysis, which surveys major U.S. retailers,” Clark and Lawton report.

Full article (subscription required) here.

MacDailyNews Take: Who in their right mind buys an OS-limited Dell nowadays anyway? Unless, perhaps, you want to toast marshmallows on-the-go. Only Apple Macs can run Mac OS X, Windows, and Linux. From The Onion:

Related MacDailyNews articles:
Dude, you got a Dell? What are you, stupid? Only Apple Macs run both Mac OS X and Windows! – April 05, 2006
Why buy a Dell when Apple’s Intel-based computers will run both Mac OS X and Windows? – June 08, 2005


  1. I understand Dell us about to announce the new Dell Halon laptop. Ships with a fireproof backpack for returning students, and an enclosed fire blanket.

    Yes, this could have happened to Apple. We all know that, but where’s smoke, there’s fire. Building very complex products at the severest lowest price implies hundreds of tiny possible cost-cutting judgments.

    Dell is in a tail-spin of bad service, and threatening conflagrative policies. I know many resellers, and all are in dismay. And people don’t recommend products under the pall of such doubt. A subtle shift is in play.

    Dell is doomed.


  2. Call me absolutely crazy but I see the present quarter as a mega hit for Apple. Great movements are often not obvious until after the fact. If I could a pulse on the Apple desktop/laptop movement, I’d say we’re talking just north of 2 million units shipped this quarter. I know it sounds wishful but the signs are there: 150+ retail stores, Intel transition complete and, of course, iTunes/iPod. We’ll see in about 2 months.

  3. Spark,

    Not true. My office manager (who is a mid-50s age woman with NO tech knowlede) was having a heart attack yesterday that the two Dell laptops she bought for her daughters last Christmas would burst into flames at any second. She had me help her check if those laptops and batteries were effected (they were).

    If she was shopping right now, I guarantee she wouldn’t be buying a Dell.

  4. Nuclear Kid,

    I agree entirely.

    All the usual indicators in the internet and what I’m hearing ‘on the ground’ in Europe point in that direction.

    I believe it’ll be the quarter when Apple really take off, and start winning significant market share.

  5. Having once been the proud owner of a Dell Inspiron loaded with Windows ME, I have to say that Dell has more going against it than cheap, shoddy hardware components.

    That crappy OS that every Dell ships with isn’t doing the company’s bottom line any favors either.

  6. To all those debating my assertion: I hope you are correct and I am wrong. I think, however, that for every average person on the street that is aware of Dell’s battery problem, I can find at least dozen who are not. (Please, no one take me up on this. I have no intention of conducting on the street surveys) ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”wink” style=”border:0;” />

  7. Spark don’t know about else where but here in UK it was on front page of at least one newspaper a couple days ago and 2nd up on the BBC TV news as well as on various radio stations so I suspect that its pretty well known by now.

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