Sony has begun to do what we have all been
asking begging of computer manufacturers: deliver a bloat-free computer. There is a catch are several catches though. At this point the option is only available for a custom-configured Sony VGN-TZ2000, and Vista Business must be your operating system of choice. Oh, and we can’t forget to mention that there is a $50 premium that you must pay to get a squeaky clean PC.
Sony dubs the option Fresh Start, and while they don’t say exactly which things your system will come without they do have a reassuring statement regarding it:
Opt for a Fresh Start™ and your VAIO PC will undergo a system optimization service where specific VAIO applications, trial software and games are removed from your unit prior to shipment. Fresh Start™ safely scrubs your PC to free up valuable hard drive space and conserve memory and processing power while maximizing overall system performance right from the start.
What I love is that it says they “safely scrub your PC” which is almost a statement of admission as to how terrible the software is that they actually pre-install normally. I’m actually surprised that they wrote that second sentence in the description at all because that will leave a lot of people wondering why Sony wouldn’t want to give them the best experience possible right off the bat.
I would like to give Dell some credit because I believe that they are leaps and bounds better than many of the manufacturers out there. Even on one of their budget computers you’re able to remove any antivirus software and productivity suite, which is a lot more than I can say for their competitors. And Dell doesn’t charge a dime for turning those things off, but then again there are some other things that comes with their PC’s that you still can’t have removed at the factory.
So what do you think? I know I’d go for it, but is forking out an additional $50 worth it to you considering how much hassle it could save in the future? I would assume that the computer also comes with a way to restore the system back to this “Fresh” state, but there is no mention of that.
UPDATE: Looks like Sony will be removing the $50 fee tomorrow.