Friday, August 10, 2007


First of all, I wish to declare that I am not in any way connected to Dell in whatever ways and I don’t earn a single cent for writing this article. I just received the new Dell Inspiron 1520 laptop the other day and wish to share on why I always insist on buying Dell. This is the first time I am using Microsoft Windows Vista and it seems too user friendly that it behaves like a nagging mother who is reminding you on everything.

My next computer may be an Apple as I always want to move to the 'dark' side for once like how I did for switching to Sony Ericsson from Nokia. Furthermore, Apple computers are nowadays more affordable and has adopted the same Intel Duo Core 2 chips like Window based PCs. Therefore, I can even run Windows on them or have dual OS to switch around when I want to use the MAC OS. OK, let's get to the present now.

Many marketing strategies of laptops nowadays are just trying to lure people to buy laptops for the wrong reasons and for reasons which others already have. For example HP is having a heavy The PC Is Personal Again by telling you all the features their laptops can do which is what all the rest on the planet can do. Acer nowadays is showing off their Dolby Surround speakers as the thing to lure people to buy their laptops. Who on earth buy laptops for the sake of speaker systems? Get yourself an Altec Lansing or Bose speakers if you want good middle-class affordable speakers.

Why buy Dell? The 5 reasons why I choose it over other brands:

1. You have the latest hardware and software choices. When something is released, you will have high possibilities to configure the latest systems with it very soon – much sooner than any brands in the market. The flexibility of choices for each hardware part is just what I love about. Other brands do copy the same method but have very limited choices like the Apple online store. Dell does not have a finish built product from the start so you cannot try them in the shops. They only build your machine after you purchase it online or by cheque. It will take around 5 days or more to reach the destination of your choice by delivery. They always come with very new products to satisfy your needs. A good example is the Ageia Accelerator card which was supported once it was released to support 3D first-person games to the latest Intel Wireless-N Mini-card (up to 5X faster and get up to twice the range of 802.11g when used with a Wireless -N router) now.

2. The on-site next business day service is the real reason I always recommend it to people who are not good at self repairing the system when it fails and especially for laptops since the parts are not easy to chance because of availability and compatibility issues. It is always 3 years maximum, unlike Sony Vaio which even if you have all the money in the world to pay more and they won't give you more than a year. It is crucial especially if you have a deadline coming and you cannot afford time spent to bring your system to the technical support and wait for them to finish repair and bring back, yet not confirming whether it will definitely work. I have helped my friends through the suffering technical support of IBM and it took him over a month to get his laptop to be fully fixed. He had to wait a week each time for the repair to finish and yet the problem was not fully solved and was brought back for another week of repair.

For Dell, you call in when you have problems with your laptop through their toll-free number. They will hear your problems and try to assist you through the phone support. If the problem cannot be solved, they will send engineers / technicians to your site the next business day. Normally, they have appointed some technicians for every major city. For JB for example, there are 8 working to cover the city. They will call you the next day and reach the destination of your choice to repair. They will test the machine and confirm that it is fully working before they leave. Soon later, Dell will call you to confirm that your system has been repaired and whether your problem is fully solved. They will normally send you a link later to fill in a survey to improve their service. Since the warranty is international, I can have repairs in JB or Singapore up to my choice so it is really convenient. Sometimes, they give you more than what you ask for! There was once when my motherboard died on me and the technician came with a new graphic card too to replace as well for free. I hesitate to take it but he said since he already carry it and getting a new one will be better, I just let him replace it.

3. Competitive pricing is the last reason. Yes, Toshiba is the best laptop maker in the planet. Fujitsu has cool designs just like Apple too. However, if you compare every single specification, most probably Dell is cheaper. I did the comparisons and nobody come close! As for many other brands, they don't supply you with the full details. They will just tell you for example that it comes with a 120GB SATA-2 hard disk without telling you the RPM or even if it is the ancient IDE type and 2GB RAM without telling you how many MHz it has. These small details can cost you a lot of difference in pricing and performance. This is always the case if you look at those promotional brochures you get in the city. I know because people always show me such brochures of even Toshiba and Fujitsu and telling me that they are cheaper. When I look through the specifications, much information is missing and you are risking buying lower performance hardwares.

People always love free gifts and the more free gifts worth how many thousands of dollars bundled with your laptop, you will be lured to buy the laptop for the wrong reasons. Be very careful when you go out buy something which comes with tones of free gifts because chances are such products cannot sell and rely on those stupid gifts to make you happy. Sit down and calculate as most of the time, you are paying more for junk! My friend was a victim and I reminded him at the end of the day that he is buying a laptop and not for all those free gifts before he realized how much more he would spend on the rubbish.

4. The new generation Inspiron and XPS (The World's Thinnest 13.3" Notebook as of June 27th, 2007) laptops finally come with more choices of colours. Dell is always behind their competitors when it comes to design and look. As for me, I always put function over form as I don’t really care about design if I have to choose between them. Normally you pay more for design. Now, you have the choice of colours which is not bad. Unlike the time when I buy my Dell laptop, it only comes in standard silver. This will win over more people who put design and colour choices over performance.

5. Contrary to rumours spreading around, Dell hardware parts are not cheap rubbish made in some unknown country somewhere on earth. I wonder where those rumours come from. Probably from sour competitors who are losing out on sales. Whatever it is, they always use the latest and best in each department. For example they use NEC DVD burner which is the best at the moment for DVD burning and even the latest Blu-ray disc ROM if you have too much money to spend on the latest. They use all the latest nVidia graphic cards and Intel chips just like everyone else. They use HITACHI hard disks which are at the moment among the best in the market (with Seagate who is having a good comeback) and very reliable.

It is therefore always good to buy Dell. I had experienced their technical services and am extremely happy with them after a few times, whether in Singapore or JB. You have assurance that someone will come and repair it for sure on the next day and you have nothing to worry about especially when you are chasing deadlines. Unlike the 90s, building your computer yourself is much cheaper than buying a branded PC. Nowadays, the price is of not much of a difference so you might as well just get a Dell. I had used their computers and recommended many to use them and so far, everyone is happy and no complaints received. I hope they keep up their good work and keep on improving. Their after sales service is what really impressed me the most which others struggle to compare efficiently.


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