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Thursday, January 12, 2012

Dell Readying To Re-Enter Tablet Market in 2012

Dell hasn't made any formal announcement at the 2012 International Consumer Electronics Show, but the PC maker is leaking information in the background at the Las Vegas show this week. Dell told Reuters it plans to re-enter the tablet market later this year.

Dell originally entered with the Dell Streak. Now, the Streak is officially dead. Dell first killed the 5-inch version, and officially put the kibosh on the Streak 7 in December. Dell quietly announced the move on its product page for the Android-based Streak. The Dell Streak joined HP's TouchPad as two of the tablet failures in 2011 while Apple continued to dominate the scene with its category-defining iPad.

Now, Dell's chief commercial officer, Steve Felice, told Reuters in an interview that the company better understands how consumers value the ecosystem as much as the tablet hardware. And Dell will push stronger into the consumer arena with its next effort.

Dell's Learned Lessons

"We have been taking our time. The general failure of everyone that's tried to introduce a tablet outside of Apple" suggested Dell made a prudent choice, Felice told Reuters. "You will see us enter this market in a bigger way toward the end of the year. So we are not really de-emphasizing it, we are really being very careful how we enter it.

"When you are talking about PC, people are more focused on the hardware itself. When you are talking about the tablet or the smartphone, people are interested in the overall environment it's operating in," he added. "As we have matured in this, we are spending a lot more time in the overall ecosystem."

Felice did not tell Reuters whether it would base its next tablet on the Android operating system or on Windows. But he did say he likes the Windows 8 touch features. Dell appears to be...

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