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Dell aims upmarket

Dell aims upmarket

For months now, we've been hearing about Dell's plans to start a new high-end, white-glove line of desktops and laptops aimed at the well-heeled consumer not looking for a bargain-basement PC. Good thing, too, since the margins on those $599 boxes are razor-thin, and mainstream computer brands are seemingly stuck in an airlinelike price war at the bottom.

The XPS name, currently the tag for Dell's gaming rigs, is being appropriated for the new line, which will feature laptops starting at $2,700 and desktops from $1,100, according to the New York Times. In a press conference later today at the appropriately classy Ritz-Carlton Hotel, Michael Dell is expected to lay out more details. But from what we can suss out, the new XPS models are just rebranded versions of the relatively recent Dimension 9100 and 5100C, which are decent machines, but not anything new.

Aiming for the luxury market, as opposed to high-end gamers, we've seen the new XPS brand referred to as Dell's "Lexus" line, which seems an appropriate comparison from a marketing point of view. One of the main selling points is the promise of enhanced customer service, with reduced hold times and an XPS-only tech-support team.