Are we really that
surprised? Anybody that's done PC support in the last 10 years has known there were major quality problems with certain Dell products. My company has strongly advised against buying any
Dell PCs since Sept/Oct 2003 because of widespread reliability and service support problems we were seeing at our client's sites.
I think I have an idea of what might have happened...
1) Dell went public with an IPO in 1988.
2) Dell made the Fortune 500 in 1992 at which point Wall Street started paying closer attention.
3) Since so much of their market value is now determined by stock analysts, business decisions are being made with an eye towards placating the investment community rather than doing what's right for their customers.
From my experience watching "high growth" tech companies, seeing something like this happen at Dell was only a matter of time. Sooner or later, most public companies resort to playing ill-advised 'games' to keep their valuations up.
If there is a surprise anywhere on this mess, it's just how egregious a violation of customer trust Dell's actions were.
Oh well...I guess it's all over - except for the lawsuits
and potential criminal charges.
Like Vonnegut said: So it goes.