The Macalope Daily: Imitation is the sincerest form of stealing

Hey, do you guys like the MacBook Pro? Sure you do! Well, then, you are going to love the Dell XPS 15z (the “z” is for “inchez”). It’s exactly like the the 15-inch MacBook Pro, except without the self-respect.

Let’s see: aluminum finish, backlit keyboard, optical drive on the right, ports on left, a power indicator that’s a series of dots that light up when you push a button. Heck, why not just slap an Apple logo on it to complete the effect? Satire is, after all, protected speech—even if you’re satirizing yourself.

The only “innovation” here seems to be putting the headphone and microphone jacks on the right side, using a black surface for the hand-rest, and including a hinge that looks more likely to break. That’s the kind of value-add you can expect from Dell!

This is, of course, before you get to the fact that you have to run the poke-in-the-eye that is Windows 7.

This isn’t the first time Dell’s made an “homage” to an Apple laptop, but it’s probably the most homage-tastic. Despite what you might think, the Macalope isn’t completely unfamiliar with the wonderful world of PC laptops (he does hang out with the Winotaur after all). Consequently, he’s long wondered why PC manufacturers don’t steal even more of Apple’s design ethic, since they clearly have none of their own. Unless “Ports über alles!” is a design ethic.

In typical Dell fashion, the new laptop even comes with false claims about its specifications. According to Dell, the XPS is the world’s thinnest 15-inch laptop at 0.97 inches. Which would be impressive if not for the fact that that 15-inch MacBook Pro has been 0.95 inches thin for two and a half years. Dell even says in a footnote:

No comparison made with Apple or other manufacturers not listed.

The comparison to Apple laptops apparently stopped right after the design phase.

To be fair, this isn’t the first time Dell has pretended that Apple laptops simply don’t exist—the company’s been doing that for ten years.

Let’s face it. Dell’s a cut-rate commodity manufacturer. Its business model is more like Bic’s than Apple’s. It’s just sad that the company feels it has to lie about its engineering achievements.

[Editors’ Note: In addition to being a mythical beast, the Macalope is not an employee of Macworld. As a result, the Macalope is always free to criticize any media organization. Even ours.]

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