Dell rules out return to smartphone business, focuses on Windows 8 and RT

By on December 13, 2012, 1:00 PM

After a few mild attempts at breaking into the smartphone market over the past couple of years, Dell has now confirmed they’re pulling out of the ring globally and have no intentions to return in the near future.

The announcement was made by the company’s head of consumer development Jeff Clarke at the Dell World conference in Texas and is hardly surprising at this point given their U.S. retreat earlier this year.

Dell started its Android smartphone business with the poorly received Aero and later tried to carve out a niche of its own with the Streak 5 and Streak 7 tablets. They were poorly supported, though, and weren’t even updated to their last working Android versions in Gingerbread. Needless to say, none of them really took off.

Some versions of Dell’s Streak lineup were still available in China up until a few months ago, with the expectation that this market would prove less competitive and more profitable, but that wasn’t the case.

Commenting on the move, Clarke said the smartphone business “needs a lot of investments to really be successful,” noting that Google and Amazon make up for poor margins on mobile devices with search revenue and selling content. But purely as an Android manufacturer there aren’t many opportunities to rake in big dollars. Perhaps Samsung would disagree but they’re a notable exception among most Android manufacturers.

Going forward Dell says it plans to focus on creating Windows 8 touch-enabled computers and tablets, noting there are some "long term prospects" for the PC business and that it remains “optimistic”.

Regarding smartphones specifically, although they won’t be making any hardware, Dell says it will provide smartphone solutions to accommodate the BYOD trend in the enterprise.

User Comments: 4

Got something to say? Post a comment
Trillionsin Trillionsin said:

Really? For the longest time I wanted a Dell Streak... and never even got to see one in the stores, then I forgot about it because I bought something available in the store. lol is this my fault or retailers?

treeski treeski said:

That's too bad. The Venue Pro was a really sleek looking phone. They could have made some great products if they prioritized and supported.

1 person liked this | KbloodyK KbloodyK said:

If they tried hard enough and did stuff differently, Dell could potentially be a great computer/tablet/smartphone company. they just got to get themselves together better and reorganize and re-prioritize.

Guest said:

Doesn't matter, they would have probably only offered a Windows 8 option anyway.

Load all comments...

Add New Comment

TechSpot Members
Login or sign up for free,
it takes about 30 seconds.
You may also...
Get complete access to the TechSpot community. Join thousands of technology enthusiasts that contribute and share knowledge in our forum. Get a private inbox, upload your own photo gallery and more.