With brand allegiances pretty strong in the world of consumer tech, it's not that unusual to have fanboys lash out at a rival's product, saying it smells of one form of bodily waste or another. It's rare however when such statements are meant to be taken literally.
But that's the very real problem faced by Dell at the moment. Owners of the company's Latitude 6430u laptops are complaining that the new, factory-shipped machines reek of the distinctive smell of cat urine.
Dell's hardware support forums are now full of disgruntled customers, reaching for the nose pegs and snuff boxes as a result of the smelly computers.
"A few weeks ago I got a new Lattitude 6430u for work," says user Three West. "The machine is great, but it smells as if it was assembled near a tomcat's litter box. It is truly awful!"
Another user called Hoteca, experienced similar olfactory issues: "I thought for sure one of my cats sprayed it, but there was something faulty with it so I had it replaced. The next one had the same exact issue. It's embarrassing taking it to clients because it smells so bad."
Dell has assured users that there hasn't been a feral feline running amok around the factory exacting a one-cat dirty protest, and have stated that no biological contaminant nor health risk is present in the affected machines. Instead, it's thought a polymer used in the construction of the laptops could be the root of the odour. Either way, Dell claims that the strange smell has been removed from all current production models, and that sniffy customers can grab a replacement if requested. [BBC]