Dell parks notebook in Carphone Warehouse
Jumps directly into the channel
Dell’s channel tyre-kicking stepped up a gear this week when it emerged that Carphone Warehouse is offering one of the vendor’s laptops as part of a broadband deal.
CPW is tempting customers onto its AOL Broadband service with the offer of a free Dell Inspiron laptop, and wireless router. All customers have to do it sign up to a 24 month contract at £19.99 a month.
A quick skim of Dell’s website throws up a similar PC priced at £399, but no mention of the Carphone promotion. Neither company were around this morning to elaborate on what other promotions may be in the pipeline.
According to the Wall Street Journal, customers will get a voucher for the free laptop, and will be able to upgrade to swankier models if they wish. The firms are still debating who will actually hold the stock when the deal goes live in September.
After a rather nasty few years, which have seen it lose both the number one PC spot and quite a lot of senior executives, Dell has recently succumbed to self-doubt, and been re-examining its (proclaimed) direct only business model.
Industry watchers have long questioned how it could expand its share in the SMB and consumer markets, not to mention emerging markets, while religiously sticking to the direct only model.
In May, Michael Dell admitted, "we have not done as much in the channel as we probably should have - certainly not as much as we could have. So now we're going after it."
This was swiftly followed up by confirmation that it was considering a channel program in Europe.
In practice, this has meant tie-ups with Walmart and BestBuy in the US, and the insistence that it already works with resellers in Eastern Europe.
In fact, the company has always worked with VARs, but chose not to advertise the fact. And, from the VARs’ point of view, Dell had a tendency to blow hot and cold.
However, its corporate mid-life crisis seems to have prompted it to woo the channel anew, in the corporate equivalent of a straying spouse croaking “You Were Always on my Mind.” ®
Unfortunatly being an Orange broadband subscriber I could not take advantage of the PC World offer. But I'm ready to move, but not to AOL at any cost. I'm hopping the rest of this dismal industry takes the bate, and starts offering similar offers, it sure to backfire. So bring it on. Who are we going to see first on the BBC's watchdog program!
That's old hat
A few years ago, Best Buy was giving away (crap, bottom of the line) HP desktops with a 2 year AOL membership. So CompUSA joined the fray with (crap, bottom of the line) Compaqs (pre merger) for two years with Earthlink.
They "sold" them to punters (thanks Brits) during Christmas. Never saw the offer again.
Hang on a mo....
24 months @ £20 a month = £480.
Laptop = £400.
Obviously, they won't be that price for CPW, but still - how much of the profit on this broadband deal is going to be eaten up in laptops? It's not like they're going to retain many customers with their current level of amazingly crap service.
Gotta be a good deal compared to what I pay virgiNTL
It would get me to swap, mind you, a free pen would with the QOS I have add from bransons lot.
Says a lot about the build quality and general cost spent no the Dell laptop, if they can be given away, I wonder how much money Dell see from the deal.
I can't imagine a Thinkpad being included in a deal like this.