Is it possible that Dell knew they would be faced with the recently horrifying battery recall? According to CRN, documents that were obtained via the Freedom of Information Act revealed that Dell had already been in communication with many people earlier on in 2005 regarding battery flaws. So why didn't they act sooner? In fact, they did do something, but since they believed that the faulty units were much more limited in number and limited to a smaller sample, they recalled just a fraction of those units last year:

"The failure mechanism itself was different enough in December to what we saw in the last several weeks [before the August recall]. We diagnosed it [last year]. There was a trend. We really felt like we pinpointed it in December and went on with our lives, so to speak. That's part of what you could assume would be driving the scope of the recall back then. That's sort of an indication that, with Sony's insistence and our conversations with them, they were able to pinpoint ... a population to be isolated that we could diagnose and feel highly confident it was limited to that population of 22,000 units," said Dell spokesman Ira William.
Could be true. While they knew there was a problem, they couldn't readily identify the exact cause. Dell's recent expansion of their own recall along with many other companies has prompted Sony to create a worldwide initiative to replace the defective units. It's possible even more companies will begin to join in, due to the very widespread use of Sony batteries.