Dell fined in Taiwan for online pricing glitches

Dell was fined NT$1 million for feeling to meet sales obligations after online snafus dropped prices

Dell was fined on Thursday by a Taiwanese city agency for failing to meet sales obligations of heavily discounted products resulting from online pricing snafus, according to online news reports.

The PC maker was fined NT$1 million (US$30,478, as of Thursday) by the Taipei City Government for holding back sales of heavily discounted Latitude E4300 laptops and 19-inch monitors, after online glitches caused the product prices to plummet, according to a news report in the Taipei Times.

The E4300 laptop was being sold for NT$18,558, a bargain compared to usual price of NT$69,000, while 19-inch LCD monitors were being offered for a miserly NT$500.

A Dell spokesman didn't confirm or deny the report. "We cannot speak about government actions taken against Dell," said Bob Kaufman, a Dell spokesman.

Tens of thousands of orders for the products were made by consumers earlier this month, but Dell canceled those transactions. The company was then ordered by Taiwan's Consumer Protection Commission to make good on the purchases in an effort to protect consumer rights.

The company is working with the authorities in Taiwan to resolve the pricing situation, Kaufman said. As soon as pricing glitches were found, the company reached out to affected customers and offered discounts on the products. He didn't comment on whether Dell would complete its sales obligations.

"We will continue to work with government leaders in the coming days to reach a fair resolution to all parties affected," Kaufman said.

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