Hey Dell, Where Are Those "Very Cool" Laptops Your Customers Ordered?

We’ve been getting a bunch of very long, very angry complaints about Dell’s inability to deliver the “very cool” laptops they touted in their apology to Consumerist.
They laptops were originally supposed to ship on June 26. According to Dell’s website, their current ship date is August 28. Dell’s customers are mad, mad, mad. They got no warning that their computers would take weeks and weeks to ship. We’re also getting reports that Dell is giving customers the run around when they try to cancel.

Dell’s latest post to their blog lays the blame for the delay on their inability to paint the laptops.

The finish on the XPS M1330 is similar to a custom paint job on a car, but with one additional complexity–on a car, typical viewing occurs from several feet away. With a notebook, the typical viewing range is much closer… sometimes a foot or less. This requires a different level of attention to detail. Why do I bring that up? There was no problem painting hundreds at a time. But as we increased the volume, otherwise manageable factors like dust contamination caused our successful yields to decrease. Adding to the complexity, the Crimson Red and the Pearl White colors require more coats of paint and more touches to create the finished product–that means there is more opportunity for dust contamination.

Dell, it was probably a bad idea to take orders on a laptop you haven’t figured out how to build. Apologizing to your customers isn’t enough, they’re almost ready to riot!

You can read a summary of complaints on PC World. Our best recommendation for those who ordered these laptops and were treated so poorly is to cancel your order and keep this experience in mind the next time you go laptop shopping. Dell doesn’t want your business! Take it somewhere else.

For the rest of you, this model laptop is still on sale at Dell’s site. You might want to avoid it.

XPS M1330: What’s Going On? [Direct2Dell]
Dell Shipping Order Status and Customer Service Issues [Notebook Review]


Edit Your Comment

  1. B says:

    Why is the paint job so important on a laptop, anyways? Does the red paint make it run programs faster, or help the battery life?

  2. Cowboys_fan says:

    I can’t begin to start complaining about Dell. That’s a lie. Overpriced, lower quality, loaded with crapware, micro-crash supporting morons. Just give me an unpainted one and I’ll paint how much you suck all over it.

  3. AlteredBeast (blaming the OP one article at a time.) says:

    @B: Part of the money someone shells out for a “cool” laptop is the fancy paint. I’d e pretty pissed if I paid extra for a nice paint job and there was dust and such between the layers. Then again, I wouldn’t be spending extra money for a red laptop in the first place.

  4. Nighthawk Foo says:

    @B: Adding a Type-R sticker to a computer can increase the clock speed by 10%

  5. Trai_Dep says:

    @B: Why are trolls so important on a blog, anyway? Do their dumb-assed comments make retards more likely to ever touch a member of the opposite sex w/o restraining orders being filed, or make the site interesting for Consumerist?

  6. davidaegger says:

    Get a MacBook instead! Funny that these are being advertised at college campuses as student notebooks but it seems they won’t ship until after classes have started at many schools.

  7. jmschn says:

    @ TRAI_DEP: Put me down for the entertainment value for Consumerist.

  8. MikeB says:

    @trai_dep: Actually, I do not see B’s comment to be trollish. Not many people care how a laptop looks only that how it functions. your comment on the other hand is what I would consider to be a trollish comment.

  9. Xystance says:

    It’s not just the M1330s.

    I put in an order two months ago for a Latitude D630 and Dell has pushed back the ship date three times. (shakes head)

  10. Caprica Six says:

    @davidaegger: yes, I agree! git yerself a Macbook either Black or White and still ber able to run yer PC applications!

  11. DontKnowthe411 says:

    As one of the people who wrote in, it’s not just the delay but the awful knowledge base of the CS and unclear answers that has gotten many people upset. From all reviews, the new laptops are very good and cost less than similarly high reviewed laptops. However, their illogical rollout strategy and continuing to take orders while not delivering on the old ones seems foolish.

    Regardless, I would cancel if I didn’t need a new laptop and I am afraid that when I do they will start actually filling their orders.

  12. gte910h says:

    Or even better, cancel the order, and buy a gateway. Mine was here within 6 business days of purchasing it, on normal shipping.

  13. STrRedWolf says:

    Why go with a Dell XPS laptop with a custom paint job? All they are, really, are tuned gaming machines you can lug around. Forgo the custom paint job, and choose the Inspiron series instead — same performance for less. Just get the NVidia graphics instead of the ATI or Intel versions for your display adapter.

    Too bad Dell’s no longer selling the E1505N, the Ubuntu-loaded E1505. That would be very cheap.

  14. jdamb89 says:

    Hey. I think people should know that order delays are extending well beyond XPS systems. AS evididenced on forum.notebookreview.com, delays have also ravaged customers of the 1420, 1520, and 1720 Inspiron notebooks. I myself ordered a 1520 Inspiron with a ship date of thie morning. It has been delayed now til the 16th.

  15. mrjimbo19 says:

    I wanted to order one of these systems but the delays pretty much have scared me off from doing so. Never understood why something would be placed on sale when it is not even able to be produced, even in small numbers…

  16. mrjimbo19 says:


    I would check what color you ordered and call in and ask if that is delaying your order, from what I have read and heard this is the most common reason… it seems only the black back panel is available in large quantities.

  17. King of the Wild Frontier says:

    Like, chill out, everyone. Dell farmed the job out to the guy who used to be in their “Dude” ads, and he’s gotten a lot of skunk weed lately instead of the kind bud, and it’s harshing his mellow.

  18. DontKnowthe411 says:

    @STrRedWolf: The New Inspirons aren’t shipping either. In fact, that’s what I ordered. It’s one of the “cool new laptops” DEll described.

  19. bedofnails says:

    I have yet to see a screen shot of the apparent 6/26/07 ship date, either from the site or an invoice.

    I will be placing an order for mine this week.

  20. DontKnowthe411 says:

    @bedofnails: There was never a 6/26/07 ship date. There were ones for July or early August (and now for September and October) but no 6/26/07 because that’s the day they came out.

  21. Kbomb says:

    I recently bought a Insipiron from Dell and I recieved two different delay notifications that the delivery was being pushed back. I was getting pretty steamed but when it was finally ready to ship they gave me a free shipping upgrade to overnight so that pacified me a little bit.

  22. Erasmus354 says:

    If you want a M1330, then order black! People are getting systems in Black right now. I received my Black M1330 4 days ago. It is a great system. They aren’t lying or giving you a run-around when they say the limiting factor right now is color. The only systems to ship in bulk are Black. Some people got a Black system in about a week from order to shipping! Very few red systems have shipped, and I don’t know of any white that have shipped.

    If you want a M1330, get black!

  23. Gigadafud says:

    I have been dealing with the issue of Dell taking FOREVER to ship me any or all laptops lately. I order them for work and have order 5 or so in the past month and i have only gotten 1 in so far. The guy over at Dell that I know claims its a delay in the LCD’s but who knows.

  24. dohtem says:

    Why the hell are they explaining the complexities of painting the laptop. The way I see it, they promisied a product and it is their business to deliver and not give excuses. If they fuck up (which they clearly have in this case), make amends and fix it.

    Dell, do not give excuses for your inability to deliver.

  25. daub815 says:

    I didn’t order the XPS, but the Inspirons are delayed also. The website is very helpful with expecting to ship August 1st, but then clicking on the item reveals that it will ship at the end of August. Could someone make up their mind?

  26. swalve says:

    No warning? I quote Dell’s site (emphasis mine):

    The Preliminary Ship Date represents the estimated time it takes to process your order and custom build your computer based on approved credit card purchase.

    *** The Preliminary Ship Date is not intended to provide you with an actual estimated ship date.

    Your estimated ship date may vary based upon the payment method you choose and other factors. You will receive your Estimated Ship Date in your e-mail confirmation. Customers using E-Check as their method of payment should add 3 days to their Preliminary Ship Date.

    You’re buying brand new models from a mail-order company.

  27. ShadowFalls says:

    heh, would have no interest in a laptop with a small screen. Sure, small size is good, but I want to be able to see what I am doing, not squint the entire time. They need to address why they cost so much for nothing uniquely special.

  28. bedofnails says:


    Then the Consumerist article is misquoting.

  29. MapmakerJenny says:

    I was one of those delayed orders as well. I only chose the green Inspiron because it was different. No biggie. But when I received my third delay message after two months of no delivery, I was one that called their dreaded customer service. They kept passing me off to different departments to try to resolve this issue. Each time somebody telling me another story. When I finally learned that the color was the delay I told them to make it black and get it moving. I’m not a college student, just needed the laptop for business travel. I have two other Dells at home and think it is a good computer.
    After they told me that I would have to cancel the first order and put in another, further delaying my delivery I tried to cancel. After an hour of phone conversation I finally hung up and had my husband do it.
    The poor customer service at Dell will keep me from ordering another Dell for home or business.
    I’m currently investigating other laptops to see which one is right for me.
    If you are looking to purchase a laptop I’d suggest to stay clear of DELL until they can get their ads and customer service in order.