Google Gets A Dell Deal

    May 26, 2006
    WebProNews Staff

The rumored deal between Dell and Google that will place Google’s presence and software on Dell’s OEM machines became official with Google CEO Eric Schmidt’s announcement.

Discussions of a Dell and Google deal were cited back in February. Also, a dual-branded home page on Dell machines has been reported as far back as January.

Schmidt’s announcement as reported from a Goldman Sachs conference by the New York Times revealed a couple of details. The default home page on that Dell hardware will be a co-branded one, and Google’s Toolbar will be pre-installed on new Dell systems.

Given the terms of a similar deal between Dell and Hewlett-Packard, Google may fork over a billion dollars to Dell over a three-year period. Neither Dell nor Google have officially commented on the arrangement beyond Schmidt’s remarks.

In the Times report, Schmidt also said this would be the first of several agreements with Dell. The deal has been attributed to the growing threat of competition from Microsoft, whose Internet Explorer 7 will be on Dell’s OEM machines and will have MSN Search (or possibly Windows Live Search) as a default setting in its search box when shipped.

Microsoft has never had a separate search box in Internet Explorer before, and that was enough to prompt Google to complain to antitrust regulators about the development. The Department of Justice brushed aside Google’s claims and noted it was easy enough for users to change the setting themselves.

Google has employed a little extra prompt on its main page for users of IE 7 to switch their default search. A window appears at the top right of the screen with an arrow pointing at IE 7’s search box asks users if they would like to make that change, and runs a utility to do so if they agree.

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David Utter is a staff writer for WebProNews covering technology and business.