Computing

Why Does Dell's Ubuntu XPS 13 Cost More Than The Windows Version?

Dell’s Ubuntu-powered XPS 13, codenamed Project Sputnik, started life as an internal R&D project. Now it has grown up and is available to buy online in North America — but why does it cost more than a Windows equivalent?

The computer now takes the name XPS 13 Developer Edition, and comes with a Precise Pangolin Ubuntu build pre-installed along with a special raft of drivers to make sure it works with as many peripherals as possible. The hardware is similar to other XPS 13 models: either an Intel i5 or i7 Ivy Bridge CPU, 8GB of RAM and a 256GB SATA III SSD, so it should run super-quick with that Ubuntu install.

But then there’s the issue of price. All this comes in at $US1550 — $US50 more than the Windows equivalent. In other words, Dell is asking you to pay more for an open-source computer than for one running a proprietary OS. And that doesn’t make much sense.

Dell says its currently working on bringing this laptop to other parts of the world, so keep an ear to the ground about Australian availability in coming weeks. [Dell via Ars Techinca]


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