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Why I buy assembled computers

Craig Berntson over on DevBlog was sharing his frustrations of building his own computer from components. I can absolutely say without reservation for me: it is not worth the aggravation Craig experienced to save a couple of bucks. I much rather have a computer that was designed to work with certain components, put together by experts, fully tested out, and have it delivered ready to boot. If I want a desktop in the next couple of days, I can make one phone call or hit one Web site and for $600 I will have a great desktop with state of the art components and a warranty to boot. If it breaks (as did my kids laptop recently) I call a toll-free number, they send a box, I ship it on their dime, they fix it and return it to me. Life is good.

While I admire people like Craig who have a certain desire to learn from the experience and want a better understanding about how things work, my life is going to be too short. I do software. I don’t sell hardware. I recommend to my clients to talk to people who do (like HP, Dell, etc.) or I talk to the experts for my clients. In fact, hardware is such a commodity now and has such low margins it is not worth selling unless you do massive volumes. Recently I went to two local computer stores to do some window shopping and found them out of business. Glad I did not buy hardware from them because they are not here to back up their warranty.

Now if I could just figure out a way to post the tech support line to the manufacturers on the front of the my mom’s computer without hurting her feelings (just kidding mom ).

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