Dell Defends Charge for Firefox Installation Work
Published on: 6th Mar 2014
The web browser and smartphone OS vendor Mozilla says that it is investigating reports that Dell charges customers to install its free web browser.
A UK customer complained that they had been charged a fee of £16.25 to have the browser pre-installed onto a computer he was buying from Dell. The browser is free of charge, and takes most people just a few minutes to instal.
Although there is unlikely to be anything illegal in charging for a service to instal the browser, Mozilla says that its user agreement prevents Dell from charging for the software -- although charging for the installation service seems more murky.
In Mozilla's policy document on that, it clearly states: "If you are using the Mozilla Mark(s) for the unaltered binaries you are distributing, you may not charge for that product."
Dell says that it is not charging for the software, just for the time involved installing it into the computer.
"In this particular situation, the customer would not be charged for the Mozilla Firefox software download, rather the fee would cover the time and labour involved for factory personnel to load a different image than is provided on the system's standard configuration."