Dell, have they no shame? 07 Sep 2005

64 comments Latest by Viperfang

Do they have an original bone left in their body? They’re even drawing “heavy inspiration” from Apple’s default desktop pattern now. Left, the Dell screen. Right, the Apple screen.

Dell desktop Apple desktop

64 comments so far (Jump to latest)

Joel 08 Sep 05

Dell has never been about being first…only about being cheaper. The 24” dell lcd can be had for $750.

Adam Thody 08 Sep 05

I’ve actually seen the Apple background super-imposed on monitors, and televisions in flyers for electronic stores, etc. It’s freakin’ everywhere!

Tom 08 Sep 05

I think it is more of something that is open to an interpretation, and debate. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a Mac user and a lover, not a PC fan. But still.

Anonymous Coward 08 Sep 05

You can be cheap and original. Dell is cheap and not.

Jeff Croft 08 Sep 05

Frankly, this is a case where Apple is just way too overpriced to matter. Yes, the Dell is obviously a bit of a rip-ioff. Yes, the Apple is still sexier. But the Dell is pretty decent looking itself, and it’s a helluva lot cheaper — I believe they even use the same LCD panels.

There is always a niche of people willing to pay a small premium for aesthetics and great design. However, that group gets significantly smaller when it becomes more than a small premium.

I’m about as big an Apple fan as there is, but I can’t understand for the life of me why someone would choose the Apple in this case (unless, of course, they are simply made of money).

Dave Simon 08 Sep 05


I got a PowerBook in May, a 15” and a 20” Apple Cinema Display to go with it.

I love it. It’s my baby. I would sleep with it if my wife wouldn’t look at me so strangely when I do.

One of my favorite things is going to a coffee shop and seeing other Mac users and starting instant friendships. Talk about PowerBooks, OS X, iPods. It’s great. Has rounded me up some business as well.

It’s elegant, well designed and just buy one. :)

Anonymous Coward 08 Sep 05

without a moment’s hesitation: the powerbook

my step brother was a stubborn fool for a long time about “just not being able to work a mac” he was lazy and reveled in rejecting apple.

he bought a powerbook a little bit before april and he now asserts it was the best purchase he has made in a very long time.

Fredrik 08 Sep 05

I don’t see how you can get so upset with this. Yes, Dell have taken inspiration from Apple, and yes it’s not original. But the fact of the matter is that sreens are going wide screen all over right now. How would they have made it to look different?

And Joel has got a very good point. Dell isn’t about originality. They’re about good products, good value and great service - three things that they continue to show over and over.

And for the record, I am a mac user :)

Jack 08 Sep 05

Yeah, Dell aren’t competing against Apple in originality. Sure they’re unoriginal but why would a Dell customer care if they were pinching Apple’s backgrounds?

David 08 Sep 05

They stole the desktop wallpaper, but the rest is just what you’d expect a monitor of that resolution to work, no?

Miguel Marcos 08 Sep 05

Both the Apple and the Dell are the same Samsung model. My friend, who loves Apple, went for the Dell because he just can’t justify the substantial extra cash. One nice thing the Dell has is the height adjuster, quite nice, very easy to adjust the height of the monitor with a single finger.

J Sheehy 08 Sep 05

Without raining on anyones parade, I don’t think that Apple should get any originality points for default wallpaper that is just “yet another group of swooshes in shades of blue”

It’s been done by everyone for a very long time: Apple, Microsoft, even the KDE and Gnome all have their fair share of out-of-the-box shades-of-blue wallpapers.

37signals lead the revolt against swooshes in logos… perhaps the time has come to speak out against blue-swooshy wallpaper :-)

Warren 08 Sep 05

We have bought a couple of those dell screens and they are v.good indeed :)

Im not getting what your point is in this, did apple produce the first LCD screen erm nope! did apple produce the first wide screen alas thats a no as well.

So that leaves the wallpaper, they may have invented that, bad dell!

Steve 08 Sep 05

Well I ummed and ahhed over which screen to buy to dual-screen my Powerbook, but ended up getting the Dell 20”. �390 as opposed to �550? I love Apple stuff, but that’s too big a difference.

It’s a really lovely screen too. It just doesn’t that sexy aluminium enclosure :sniff:

Tommy Cutter 08 Sep 05

It’s not THAT similar. I can’t really bash dell cause I have a totally sweet dual xeon precision with two 17” crt trinitron monitors.

till 08 Sep 05

Would you rather have Apple patent their “style”? Now that would be completely useless. Since software patents suck, let’s patent hardware and looks too.

--Josh 08 Sep 05

(Actually, if you read Jason’s post he seems to be only mentioning the wallpaper design, not the monitors themselves.)

e 08 Sep 05

lol, just lol.

Have you actually seen the Dell monitor in person? Completely different base/stand and tilt design. Only thing similar would be that square screen.

Ugh, the ignorance of you Apple lackies.

Olly 08 Sep 05

The Dell actually uses the same LCD part underneath it all though, doesn’t it?

Bob 08 Sep 05

@e. You’re an idiot.

Over 8 years of owning small business, we’ve been through two dozen macs and a half dozen screens (crts and lcds). The worst screens among the bunch? Apple’s. Our ADC connections are useless and the monitors have to be discarded or sold before they’re worn out simply because Apple abandoned a platform. The 20W Dell has the same pixel resolution and screen quality as Apple’s but cost $425 shipped (we used Dell’s promotional coupons). It has the same USB hub, swivels to Tiger-supported portrait mode, and a VGA port so that we can plug it into any computer we have. After comparing the price/performance/longetivity aspects, Apple doesn’t have an advantage.

Yogi Da Bear 08 Sep 05

This is the point about Dell: They innovate at the supply chain end of things. No one comes close to matching their supply chain. And, get this, Apple has tried very hard to emulate Dell’s supply chain. Remember when Apple used to never sell direct? Remember when they’d have months and months of inventory just sitting around? Yeah, you can thank Dell for prompting those changes.

Now, product innovation from Dell? Hahahahaha!!!!

Chris Johanesen 08 Sep 05

I’ve got to concur with most of the other posts here.

Got my Dell 20” flat screen for $359 shipped. God I love coupon codes. Yeah, I’d love a Apple product, but the Dell works just as well with my iBook, and cost half the price.

I’m all for great design, but I refuse to may a premium for a luxury brand name and style that doesn’t get me significantly more functionality. If I could build my own generic Intel box and run OSX on it reliably I would do it in a second (hopefully I will be able to soon). Would I rather have a nice shiny Mac tower? Sure, but I’d be an idiot to pay 3 times the price if other equally functional options exist.

Form is important, but function and cost are king.

dmr 08 Sep 05

Someone said the 24” dell lcd was $750? I’m seeing it on their web site for $1200. I love my 24” cinema display and certainly wouldn’t be caught dead with a clunky ass dell display, they’re so cheap looking; PCs have no grace.

Anonymous Coward 08 Sep 05

“I�m all for great design, but I refuse to may a premium for a luxury brand name and style that doesn�t get me significantly more functionality.”

You’re not for great design then. Great design costs money. Great design is functionality, aesthetic functionality.

Adrian L. 08 Sep 05

It’s a monitor background.

Is this really an issue?

toby 08 Sep 05

You can often pick up the Dell 24” for ~$800 with coupon codes. It uses the same LCD panel as the Apple Cinema display.

If you want to pay $700 for a white aluminium enclosure, that’s your call.

Jeff Adams 08 Sep 05

I agree with Jeff Croft, the Dell is way cheaper and quality is just as good. If I were to buy a new computer (alas, no money) I would get an apple powerbook with the dell monitor.

Carl 08 Sep 05

Who cares, its a desktop wallpaper that Apple probably didn’t even create in house. Open up a Best Buy, Circuit Cty ad, etc. and you will see a similar desktop used on computers that are advertised, etc.

The real fact of the matter is, as has already been pointed out, the DELL LCD display and the Apple LCD display are the same LCD… but the Apple costs twice as much.

Buy the DELL. Who cares about the stupid desktop wallpaper.

Rick 08 Sep 05

I think the real question is: why can’t Dell design decent products? It doesn’t cost Apple hundreds of dollars more to make a better-designed display; why doesn’t Dell spend the tiny amount more to hire a sensible designer and remove all differences?

Gnome 08 Sep 05

I believe the adage goes:

Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.

Scott M. 08 Sep 05

I own a 20” Cinema Display which sits next to my Dell 20” Widescreen. No question, the Dell is the better monitor. I can’t directly compare picture quality since the Cinema is a couple years older (the Dell is super bright compared to the Cinema, but I believe LCDs do lose brightness).

Four separate inputs on the Dell (DVI, VGA, S-Video, Composite) means i can have 2 boxes hooked up to it and switch back and forth. I can even tilt the monitor so I have a long portrait display. It’s a really nice package — solid and not “cheap looking.”

As much as I love Apple (I’ve owned over 10 Macs starting with a Mac Plus), my next monitor will be the Dell 24”, without a doubt.

Darrel 08 Sep 05

They all steal/borrow/sue amongst each other.

Apple just manages to figure out how to execute the stuff better.

MrBlank 08 Sep 05

I have the Dell at work and the Apple display at home and I have to say they are almost identical. The Apple may have slightly more accurate color for print design which might just be a driver thing since the LCD panel is the same in both. It’s hard to tell it’s so close.

If I had to pick knowing what I know now, I’d go with the Dell. It costs less, it is very well made, the base will raise up and down, swivel and rotate, it has lots of inputs: DVI, VGA, S-video, RCA (I can hook up my Gamecube to it :) and it has 4 USB ports. The Apple display only has its good looks, which are ruined when I shove a couple of books under it to get it raised up to the right height.

Now, if we were talking about Dell laptops … total junk. Get the Powerbook.

Rich 08 Sep 05

I never understood why Dell (or any other PC maker) couldn’t come up with an attractive case to lure away the people that buy Macs based on aesthetics. With the resources they have, surely they could make something that looks nice, but is still the same affordable Dell PC on the inside. How freaking hard could that be? It couldn’t cost that much more to make a nice case or screen enclosure. They could pick a price point in the middle of the standard *blah* PC and the fancy Mac. I’d buy it.

Greg 08 Sep 05

clunky ass dell display

There is nothing clunky about the new Dell displays. Sure it doesn’t match your bluetooth cell phone, Powerbook and iPod but it costs a whole hell of a lot less and delivers the exact same performance.

Tim Storm 08 Sep 05

they are just copying the default commodore 64 background….

Kevin 08 Sep 05

Ummm - Jason, I think you have lost your mind. Apple builds hardware and software. One of their major software applications is an OS, which includes some desktop patterns. Dell is primarily in the hardware business. Therefore creating a desktop pattern is a little “out of scope” for them. Would it have been more “original” if they used the Windows default desktop?

I know you know this… So what the heck is the point of this post? Are you feeling ok? I think you need to stop drinking that Kool-Aid Steve J. is serving. It’s making you crazy.

S 08 Sep 05

“Ugh, the ignorance of you Apple lackies.

It’s actually “lackeys,” with a Y, not IES.

Dpc 08 Sep 05

Dell is the whore of the computer industry. No R&D, not adding anything, no value added with its products

Dpc 08 Sep 05

Dell is the whore of the computer industry. No R&D, not adding anything, no value added with its products

dmr 08 Sep 05

“There is nothing clunky about the new Dell displays.”

“…lure away the people that buy Macs based on aesthetics.”

“It�s actually lackeys”
It most certainly is *smirk*

Will 08 Sep 05

As a Cinema Display owner, I’m quite happy to pay more and not have to stare at an ugly, CLUNKY Dell box on my desk every day. That’s great that your Dell displays have a myriad of inputs on them, but I use my display with my computer, and with my DVI video card, so why would I want any inputs besides DVI on my monitor? I certainly don’t plan on downgrading to VGA anytime soon. What’s the point of using a digital display with an analog signal anyway?

Sure, the Cinema Display costs almost twice as much. It’s also twice as attractive. For a lot of people, that’s important.

Also, Scott M, the Dell display uses a brighter backlight in it than the Apple display does, so it’s not that your Cinema Display is faded (although it’s certainly possible that it could be since it is a few years old) but that the two monitors are inherently different out of the box in terms of brightness.

Darrel 08 Sep 05

lure away the people that buy Macs based on aesthetics

I’m not sure too many mac users purchase their Macs based on how the box looks. It’s a nice bonus that Apple has great industrial design, but it’s not the core reason people go with Macs.

That said, I do wonder why the PC folks can’t differentiate themselves with better ID.

Wesley Walser 08 Sep 05

cough… dashboard ahem… konfabulator

I am going to eat this comment one day, but seriously blue background with waves on it, apple didn’t exactly pull it out of thin air. Now the new ipod nano is simply amazing, he pulled that out of his little pocket that no one uses (keynote anyone).

Pretty Lights & Shiny Things 09 Sep 05

“I am going to eat this comment one day”
yeah, when apple switches to intel cpu’s next year :P

let’s see, that rather sexy alu case is only an extra $2k, I think I’ll have one of those to wrap my clone and proprietary version of linux… ooo look at me! look at me! mmm I’m sooo shiny


Anonymous Coward 12 Sep 05

I am failing to care… obviously not failing to comment tho…

Don Wilson 13 Sep 05

Welcome to 3 years ago.

Brian 14 Sep 05

They say imitation is the highest form of flattery, and when companies compete, consumers win. I say bravo to Dell. Hopefully Apple will lower prices and I will eventually be able to afford a cinema display.

Shawn Oster 15 Sep 05


As someone that cares perhaps too much about their wallpaper I’ve been looking at wallpaper sites for years and ones like Dell’s and Apple’s are a dime a dozen. The blue swirly abstracty minialistic pattern had been over-done way before Apple picked it up and smacked one version on their monitor.

The true shame is that Mac users seem to think Apple invented sliced bread, when in fact they just made a cooler looking bread knife. Still a good achivement but not nearly as big as they like to think.

Vic 11 Nov 05

Yeah! I totally want to spend 1,299 on a Mac Screen and stare at pink spots all over! I can’t wait.

After that, I jump out of bed skipping just to talk to non-supportive Apple care.

Naaa, I’ll pass.

olmir 02 Dec 05

By the way, I’m not satisfied with quality of the latest iPon Nano. The brand name is very good thing, but Apple shouldn’t use it but prove it. Simple comparison with Creative’s player gives much better results. Am I along in this point of view?

Erik 07 Jan 06

I actually like the dell background better, more balanced. :)

Anonymous Coward 16 Jun 06

Apple proves their superiority to me everytime I boot up my machine.

Never used a low end Mac so I can’t vouch for em, neither have I used one of the new intel macs.

I switched to Mac 2 years ago, recently got a G5 dual, only question to me is-why didn’t do this sooner.

Viperfang 19 Jul 06

As of recently… I hate Dell. I have a dell inspiron 4000 ( Using to write this post ). Firstly, The design is comfortable and easy to use, but then again ( except from some vaio’s) which arnt?

However there is a MAJOR design flaw! When the lid is closed the mouse buttons rub against the screen and develop this unsightly mark. Luckily its not that visable when in use, but it shouldn;t be there non the less.

It also gets very hot, the heatsink couldnt cool a slight warm rat, and yet they stick a CPU under it… It doesnt even have any compound under it! I had to add that myself!

Last, but certainly not least, the dell “buzz”. This is an annoying buzzing that affects the sanity of the user. It comes from underneith the keyboard and drives the user crazy. I think its coming from the PCI Bridge… But it affects the sound card. Even with the volume muted, you can hear the buzz though the built in or external speakers aswell. This stops me frmo ignoring the buzz using headphones.

Nobody can get rid of these problems. Dell refuse to acknowledge it.

In short:
I will NEVER buy annother dell laptop again. I always used to like them. But not now. Not after this.