ZDNet is reporting that PC makers are finally getting the message that putting too much crapware (i.e. toolbars, trial products, etc.) on PCs puts return business at risk:
"While adding software, setting default search engines and including toolbars can all put money in PC makers pockets, the practice has also alienated some consumers who say all such "crapware" is clogging their hard drives and bogging down their systems.
For the moment, computer makers appear to be trying to walk a fine line, tweaking their approaches slightly but hoping not to have to slay a cash cow. Gateway, for example, offers only one program in each category, while Dell has added an option for some models that allow a user to configure a system with no trial software."
This really shouldn't have come as a big shock, except that it has taken so long for major vendors to get the message. It can be a major annoyance to buy a new PC and find several gigabytes of the hard drive filled with programs you didn't ask for. So you check out the new programs, and maybe one or two seem interesting, but they're trials! Well, you didn't pay for them, so expecting them for free was perhaps too much to ask, but many times the icons and names for these trial programs don't indicate they're trial versions at all.
There was a time when the big boys like Dell and HP only had to contend with one another, and they could all get away with shoveling crapware onto new drives. Today's PC market has many more reputable companies that would rather earn your money than crapware kickbacks, and apparently this mentality is spreading from the smaller outfits on up to the major players.