Ina Fried

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Michael Dell Says He’s Not Taking Company Back Into the Phone Business

Michael Dell has lots of plans for his soon-to-be-privately-held company. But getting back into the mobile phone business is apparently not on the list.


“We’re not getting in the mobile phone business,” Dell said in an interview with CNBC on Friday.

Instead, Dell said, the company will look to benefit from the mobile market in other ways.

“Every time a new mobile company gets born, they need servers and infrastructure and storage,” Dell told CNBC. “Companies need to protect and secure their data on these mobile devices.”

For those who have forgotten, Dell made several stabs into the phone market with both Android and Windows Phone products before stepping to the sidelines. Heck, the company was arguably a pioneer of the phablet, introducing the five-inch Dell Streak way back in 2010 at our D8 conference (and then discontinuing it in 2011).

None of those efforts won much love from either carriers or customers, though, and Dell hasn’t been making phones for some time.

Dell said the company would focus on other areas, particularly business products and services, as well as products for emerging markets. Tablets will be a piece of Dell’s business, he said.

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There was a worry before I started this that I was going to burn every bridge I had. But I realize now that there are some bridges that are worth burning.

— Valleywag editor Sam Biddle