Monday, March 02, 2009

Dell, Your Pricing Policies Suck

I'm in the market for a Netbook, and I live in the UK. But as a USAmerican, who cannot for the life of me retrain my fingers to use the UK keyboard layout, I want a US keyboard for it or else there's no point.

I start thinking "Hey, that Samsung NC10 is pretty good, why not get that?" Except no US keyboard available, not even as a replacement part through a service centre. And I really don't want to ship one from

So I also hear really good things about the Dell Mini 9, and it's dirt cheap, and runs that Linux thing all the kids keep going on about. And as a USAmerican company, surely they can accomodate me? No.

Dell will not sell you a Dell Mini 9 with a US keyboard in the UK, and they will not ship one from USAmerica to a foreign address.

Ahhh, but it turns out that if you know to order the magical part U061H, you can get a replacement keyboard module in US-International layout (which is technically a replacement part for the UK-only Vostro A90), and it's field replaceable. Sounds great. So I figure I'll buy the netbook, and also buy the keyboard module and match them up myself.

Call Dell UK and ask for that part? GBP 49 + VAT + Shipping.

Call Dell US and as for the identical part? USD 14.99 + Shipping. But they won't ship outside the US.

And this is a replacement part for a UK-only machine! They want 25% of the original value of the whole netbook for just the keyboard module.

I mean, I have an out: have my parents buy it and ship it over to me, and I'll still save about GBP 30 from going with the official import route, but Dell, your pricing policies suck and have no earthly justification of any form. I mean, Sterling may be the European Peso, but last time I checked it was still better than GBP 1 == USD 0.306.
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