Dell Strikes Back

Dell Strikes Back

It seems as though Dell is reconfirming their commitment to the gaming community. Dell has impressed us in their capacity to listen to their customers and are striving to deliver the ultimate out of box experience.


Dell has made some major changes in their XPS line since the last time we took a look at their products. While we found that “bloatware” and support issues seriously affected our customer experience when we purchased Dell’s XPS 400 in December of 2005, changes that Dell has worked hard on since then have shown us they can deliver. They now offer their customers total choice on the software loads of their high end XPS systems that are targeted towards gamers. Dell recently announced that they would feature a no preinstalled software installation option on select XPS systems in their gaming lineup. No more free ISP offers, no more AOL icons, music jukebox software, or background services hogging precious system resources. Even on their premium systems that are targeted towards users that may not be gamers, but want a higher end computing experience, they have adjusted the way their installed software is presented to the end user. And, they are making strides in support that are sure to benefit all Dell customers.

A Visit To Dell

Dell recently invited [H] Consumer to their Round Rock, Texas campus to meet with nearly two dozen hardware and software engineers, Directors, Managers, and finally, sit down and talk with Michael Dell himself.

It’s been over five months since our evaluation of Dell’s XPS 400, and while we’ve had tremendous feedback from readers and our peers in the industry, we never received any feedback from Dell as a company. Many times, regardless of a system receiving a good or bad Bottom Line score, a company representative often joins our forums and fields questions from our readers. We did not hear anything from Dell, on our forums or elsewhere.

As we found out, Dell did not take our article lightly, or other criticism they had received previously when it came to performance in the gaming market. They shifted into high gear, and entire departments were mobilized to re-evaluate the customer experience and find how they could improve in key areas where the customer was not getting the optimal “XPS” experience.

What we were shown, and indeed, what Dell has already implemented, is nothing short of refreshing.

Getting Down To Business

Our four hours at Dell were not wasted with PR double-speak. Indeed, our meetings were with Directors and Managers that were immediately responsible for the direction of Dell’s XPS product lines. What was very evident to us was that the people we met with, including Michael Dell, were passionate about their opportunity to improve the customer experience and show us exactly how they intended to do it. They clearly outlined their efforts ranging from new products to a completely new software deployment strategy on their systems. We were even given a demo of Dell’s upcoming DellConnect technical support feature that allows a technician to, with the permission of the user, directly fix issues with a customer’s computer over the internet, cutting down on miscommunications and allowing Dell support to “teach” a customer how to fix their computers on their own.

Many of these changes are already being implemented and we’re pleased to be able to explain a few of them to you.