Anti-Globalism sends along a piece on how a consumer-friendly service is not so good for PC manufacturers. "Before they ship PCs to retailers like Best Buy, computer makers load them up with lots of free software. For $30, Best Buy will get rid of it for you. That simple cleanup service is threatening the precarious economics of the personal computer industry. Software companies pay hundreds of millions of dollars to PC makers like Hewlett-Packard to install their photo tools, financial programs, and other products, usually with some tie-in to a paid service or upgrade. With margins growing thinner than most laptops, this critical revenue can make the difference between profit and loss for the computer makers, industry analysts say."
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