I know that in the past you have offered a handful of paltry Ubuntu options, though I confess I don’t understand why you bothered at all.
With the exception of your two netbook offerings, I have yet to have seen you offer anything else that indicates to me that you have any intentions to make Ubuntu a real option for your customers.
Oh, I know… for a while you offered Ubuntu on your Inspiron 15n laptop, and there was even an XPS M1330 notebook for a brief time available on your website.
But both of those were very limited in what was available for CPU options and RAM upgrades. Even the desktop option you offered for a little while was an underpowered, unimpressive castoff compared to what’s available elsewhere on Dell.com.
And now? Well, now there’s even less to look at when it comes to Ubuntu on Dell.com.
To quote what I see right there on your Ubuntu page,
Now shipping with Ubuntu 9.10 on select systems
By “select systems” you mean the following, based on what’s showing up there:
- Two netbooks
- The Vostro V13, an underpowered semi-netbook that, frankly, is a joke
- The Latitude 2100, which is also a netbook
That’s it? Really?
“But there isn’t that much demand for Ubuntu!”, I can almost hear you saying.
Well let’s see here. You bury it on your site. You offer nothing but garbage for computers available with Ubuntu — as compared to ones available with Windows.
I guess I can’t say I’m surprised if your Ubuntu sales are slow. In fact, I’d be surprised if you sell anything at all, the way you’re going about it.
Here’s my advice. This is going to sound a bit elitist here, but I’ve been computer shopping lately and that puts me in a snarky mood, so deal.
You have two options, the way I see it:
1. Just give up already
Seriously. You’re not impressing anyone with token Linux offerings. Anyone Linux-savvy enough to actually be looking for (much less FIND) the buried Ubuntu products on your site will be insulted by what they find there, and simply move on to something else, where they won’t be treated to lip service and garbage that even most Windows users wouldn’t bother giving a second look, hardware-wise.
2. Offer Ubuntu on computers comparable to your Windows 7 machines
Go big or go home, guys. Token marketing to a tech-savvy niche is an instaFAIL, but if you actually put your money where your mouth is, you’ll win Hearts And Minds, and significantly less criticism from the Open Source community, for what that’s worth.
Besides, considering the lack of the Windows Tax, comparable hardware with Ubuntu means customers might notice that they can buy non-Windows computers for a couple hundred dollars LESS, which means they might buy more of the accessories you’re always pimping with any machine on your site.
Seriously though, what you have currently and in the past is mostly just insulting. Either dump Ubuntu entirely, or get serious about it.
Sorry, guys, but somebody had to say it. You’re not doing yourself any favors with this.