Dell has decided to pass on releasing their MP3 player this holiday season. With no real reason cited for the delay, it looks like Apple can sit back and let their iPod dominate the sales charts once again.
While the release of the MP3 player has been put on pause, their work on the planned entertainment software, Zing, has continued and is expected to release sometime this fall. Zing is purported to organize downloaded music and movies on PCs.
With any luck, this will give Dell more time to finely tune their product. Jumping into an Apple dominated market isn’t something that… anyone has succeeded at. But with 2003’s DJ Ditty failure behind them, perhaps Dell has learned their lesson.
Seagate is looking to push its full disk encryption (FDE) hard drives and is getting help from Dell in doing so. FDE drives come in both 5400RPM and 7200RPM flavors in capacities up to 320GB in Dell Latitude and Precision notebooks, and also Dell's Optiplex 960 desktops. According to Seagate, 500GB FDE drivers will be available by the end of 2008.
All information stored on Seagate's FDE drives are automatically encrypted and require a password before being accessed. Without the password, Seagate claims the drive essentially locks up. That could be bad news if an end-user manages to forget the password, but in this scenario, the drive can be unlocked remotely by IT staff using McAfee's ePO software. This only applies to the enterprise level, however, and when the drives become available in the consumer market, no such workaround exists, at least not yet.
From a performance standpoint, Seagate claims there are no noticeable performance impacts as FDE drives encrypt data as it is being written and decrypt when being read.
A couple weeks ago I received a Dell Inspiron 6400 from a friend of mine. I was told that he used Windex directly on the screen, which dripped into the bottom of the LCD (between the screen and the housing). It now has a small, permanent “white fire” pattern on the bottom-center of the LCD screen. It appears not to be a physical effect, as I cannot see it when the laptop is off, but I can see it even when the backlight is turned off. What should I do to fix my display?
Tech news site Engadget got the early scoop on a new Dell 23-inch LCD monitor courtesy of an anonymous tip, one in which our neighbors to the north can already purchase. Available for $419 on Dell's Canadian portal, the SP2309W widescreen display packs a pretty impressive spec sheet.
Dell's billing the monitor as an out of the box "video conferencing solution with excellent functionality and convenience," and towards that end the 23-inch LCD comes with an integrated 2.0 megapixel webcam. Other notable specs include a max resolution of 2048 x 1152, a 2ms response time, 1000:1 dynamic image contrast ratio, a 160-degree viewing angle, a 98 percent color gamut, and VGA, DVI-D, and HDMI inputs.
No word yet on when Dell plans to make the display available in the U.S.
According to a recently filed lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, Dell has been mighty selective about who they’ve been firing lately.
In May of 2007 Dell had announced that they would be eliminating approximately 8,800 of their employees. These layoffs apparently focused on women and older employees, resulting in a nearly 80 percentile of Dell’s upper management team being male, according to the lawsuit.
“While Dell publicly proclaims a commitment to diversity as ‘an essential element of our corporate values,’ the reality fails to live up to the rhetoric,” states Steven Wittels, a lawyer representing the plaintiffs. “At Dell, it is an understatement to say that women face a glass ceiling; Dell’s glass ceiling is made of concrete.”
According to alleged statistical data the plaintiffs maintain that they’ve lost more than $1 million in salary and other benefits as a result of the discrimination.
But, according to Dell’s web site, their workforce is one third women and 32 percent of their U.S. vice presidents are women or minorities. Perhaps once the plaintiff’s numbers arise we’ll really see what goes on behind closed doors.
So, you’re in the market for an all-in-one computer with a 24-inch screen, but you’re not looking to splurge on one of those yucky iMacs, huh? Well Dell has got your back, and it comes in the form of the XPS One 24.
The 24-inch beast packs plenty of powerful features, too. Including a gigantic 1920x1080 native resolution on a 16:9 display, 4GB RAM (standard), Intel GMA X4500HD graphics (or an upgraded Nvidia GeForce 9600M GT) and an Intel Core 2 Quad Q8200 processor. Should you feel the need to donate money to some worthwhile causes without actually doing so yourself, there’s a (PRODUCT) RED version available too.
While admittedly the name isn’t the best we’ve ever seen (seriously, say it out loud), it is shaping up to be a very worthwhile media machine. Some upgraded speakers and a built in TV tuner are looking to drive that point home. It’s shipping now, and will run you $1,700 for a base model.
Dell this week has launched a new line of OptiPlex desktop rigs, starting with the company's new flagship OptiPlex 960. The 960 comes wrapped in three different chassis designs -- mini-tower, desktop, and SFF -- with a configurable interior that lets consumers choose from both Intel's Core 2 Duo and quad-processor lineup, onboard or add-in graphics, and up to 8GB of DDR2 RAM. The new OptiPlex also looks to go green with what Dell claims is a 43 percent reduction in power consumption compared to previous OptiPlex models. Other improvements include a sturdier frame, significant noise reduction (up to 60 percent), and beefed up security through full drive encryption.
Among the OptiFlex refresh also sits Dell's FX160. The FX160 is Dell's first ever thin client, and can be configured to support either a Virtual Remote Desktop thin client environment or an On-Demand Desktop Streaming environment. Underneath the hood is an Intel Atom processor.
The new OptiPlex rigs are available now with starting prices ranging from $399 (FX160) on up to $863 (960).
Dell has added the second product to its netbook lineup. The Dell Inspiron Mini 12 is now available in Japan, but will only appear on American store-shelves by the end of next month. The Inspiron Mini 12 is essentially a high-end netbook with its starting price nearly touching $600.
Although its name suggests that it is a netbook, its 12.1” screen – rather expansive for a netbook – tells a different story altogether. The Inspiron Mini 12 features an Intel Atom processor (1.3 GHz Z520 or 1.6GHz Z530), up to 80GB hard drive, 1 GB of RAM, Bluetooth and WiFi. It weighs 2.72 lbs and is less than 1 inch thick.
The instant-on system will let users access key applications and data without actually booting the machine. If Jeff Clarke, senior vice president and general manager of Dell Product Group, is to be believed the technology will also be energy-efficient as it will provide limited access to the system without engaging the CPU.
In a joint collaboration with Universal Music Group (UMG), Dell has begun offering preloaded MP3 bundles on new systems. The move, according to Dell, is to give consumers a "simple, economical way to jump-start a digital music library."
For $25, users can select a 50-song bundle devoid of DRM, or $45 for a 100-song bundle. Song bundles are broken up into several categories, such as Rock Titans, which includes tracks like Sweet Home Alabama by Lynyrd Skynyrd and Kryptonite by Three Doors Down, or Afternoon Delight represented with tracks like On Bended Knee by Boyz II Men and Crazy by Patsy Cline. Sadly users aren't allowed to create their own bundle, but then again, who doesn't have both Patsy Cline and Boyz II Men in a single playlist?
Music packs are available now on both laptops and desktops, sans XPS ONE, Inspiron Mini 9, and operating systems XP, Vista 64-bit, and Linux.