Beleaguered Dell’s mobile chief Garriques is out; Mobile division shut down

iphone wallet, wallet case for iPhone“The executive in charge of Dell Inc.’s mobile business is leaving the company and his division is being shut down, the latest sign the company continues to struggle to expand beyond its core business of selling computers to businesses,” Ben Worthen reports for The Wall Street Journal. “Ron Garriques, who joined Dell in 2007 as part of Chief Executive Michael Dell’s effort to turn around the Round Rock, Texas, computer maker, will depart in January.”

“Dell’s communications solutions group, which develops mobile phones and other devices like the Streak tablet, will be broken up and its products folded into other units, a spokesman said,” Worthen reports.

“Mr. Garriques’s group has released several devices. The Streak tablet, which went on sale in the U.S. in August, was delayed for more than a year, according to people familiar with the matter. Its sales have been ‘exciting, but immaterial,’ Mr. Dell said at a company meeting last summer,” Worthen reports. “Mr. Garriques will remain at Dell until late January and he will serve as a consultant until the end of 2011.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: As we predicted nearly four years ago: When you flee one sinking ship is it wise to hop aboard another sinking ship? Perhaps if you think it’ll take a little longer to sink, it’s better than the alternative, we guess.

It doesn’t matter if Dell hires Jonathan Ive to design their boxes. It’s the OS, stupid.

Dell offers nothing unique and no pretty cases are ever going to be able to cover up that fact. And Garriques is a communications product line manager with an electrical engineering background, not a designer. Maybe Mikey plans to take on Apple’s iPhone with a Dell DJ Phone? That went so well last time, he’s probably all excited to ramp up.

What would we do if we ran Dell? We’re so glad you asked…. We’d shut it down and give the money back to the shareholders.MacDailyNews Take, February 16, 2007

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Readers “Fred Mertz” and “Lynn W.” for the heads up.]


  1. Dear Mikey:

    Maybe you should close your doors, liquidate and give the money back to the shareholders. This was a salient piece of advice given to Apple some years ago, but I cannot recall who said it. If I recall the man!s name, I will let you know.


    Stevie at Apple

  2. To G4Dualie “Think Different!”

    There is a shorter answer: Act!

    It seems to me that Apple is the only company which saw the long term opportunities and watched the trends carefully and led the charge on so many changes that it makes it difficult or impossible for a “follower” to keep up, unless you count copying 4-5 years late as keeping up.

  3. @Burrell

    You cannot act before thinking differently.

    Michael Dell is surrounded by clones of himself, who copy one another. Their assembly-line way of thinking is wholly dependent on duplication.

    Making copies. That is how he built his empire. Deviation or derivation is incongruous and counterintuitive to Dell’s foundation, which is why I suggest melding the Dell and Microsoft brands.

    In an effort to appease shareholders, I believe Microsoft will change their philosophy and will begin producing a Microsoft-branded computer, similar to what Apple has in Macintosh; a soup to nuts experience that isn’t adulterated by the shared risk and profit taking that comes with partnerships. But it won’t be Ballmer to bring about this sea change, it will be a successor.

    If I were Michael Dell I would be thinking about making copies of Microsoft computers.

  4. G4, I don’t think management at Microsoft has a clue what to do. I think Apple really kicked everyone’s feet out in 2007. No one expected them to succeed. Everyone scrambled to counter the iPhone while Steve was on the next big thing. This whole industry has gotten complacent except for Apple. They just react.

  5. I had the distinct displeasure of meeting him once. He is incredibly pretentious and arrogant man who thought he knew it all.

    The iPhone was about to be released and he gleefully told me me how Apple would fall on it’s face.

    I am astounded that Dell kept him that long.

  6. @mactony

    No doubt, but it doesn’t matter what industry you’re in, there are leaders who have followers and just as Burrell said, the followers who have their heads so far up the leaders ass get whiplash if he makes a sudden turn.

    All those neck-brace wearing companies are too busy trying to steal your money rather than earn it.

    Dell has been stealing money for years and I attribute that to Microsoft’s stagnantation.

    When Microsoft sneezes, its industry suffers an epidemic.

  7. Bloodbath:

    May 2010 : Microsoft fires Mobile Chief
    Bloomberg: :Microsoft Corp.’s Robbie Bach will retire as head of the division that sells Xbox consoles and mobile-phone software after losing market share to Apple Inc. and Google Inc. in wireless operating systems:

    April: Palm swallowed by HP after massive losses

    Sept 2010: LG fired it’s CEO due to mobile collapse
    bbc: “LG Electronics, the world’s third-biggest mobile phone maker, has replaced its chief executive after record losses at its handset business.”

    Sept 2010 Nokia fired its CEO
    : “In an attempt to restore its fortunes, mobile phone maker Nokia has fired Olli-Pekka Kallasvuo, its embattled chief executive”

    Dell fires mobile chief closes division

  8. I don’t see how Dell ever turns it around. There’s a limit to how deeply a company can reinvent itself. At its core, Dell’s business is about cranking out computers at incredibly cheap prices, selling them at a small markup, and cleaning up on volume. That alone was the model Dell was founded on, and for awhile it was incredibly successful.

    But that model eventually failed, as anyone could have predicted. You can only cut costs so far. You can only squeeze margins so tight. And so now what can Dell do?

    The idea that Dell is going to turn itself into a fast-moving, innovative company is just laughable. Innovation is not in this company’s DNA. The company was founded on producing as much cheap product as quickly as possible. That’s all they know how to do.

    We all joke about telling Michael Dell that he should shut the company down, but seriously: there is no future for this company. If the people running it have any sense, they’ll try to arrange a merger with some other company that actually knows how to invent things. Or else they can just plod on, closer to the end every year.


  9. Dell shareholders should be pissed:

    Ron Garriques is laughing all the way to the bank, hauling a $1.44 million severance payment + $6.3 million contract for future consulting services.

    All this for an ex-executive that didn’t exactly deliver any success to the company. But this is Corporate America, after all. Managements of these companies have absolutely no regard for what an individual is worth in real terms. You don’t have to be successful to line your pockets, you just need to surf through the corporate offices at any one of the bloated Fortune 500. Three or four years licking someone’s ass, and then you can spend the rest of your life on your private island with your fifth trophy wife.

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