Dell Debuts PC Support Subscriptions, New Workstation Software

Dell Inc. (DELL) is introducing a subscription-based customer support service for consumers who buy desktop computers, laptops and tablets.

For fees starting at $239 a year, users will have access to telephone or Web-based assistance 24 hours a day, the Round Rock, Texas-based company said today in a statement. Dell will also provide support services via Facebook Inc. and Twitter Inc.

Dell Chief Executive Officer Michael Dell, who in February agreed to take the company private in a $24.4 billion transaction with Silver Lake Management LLC, is expanding in mobile computing and business services amid a global slump in PC sales.

The company is also releasing new software that can automatically configure workstations to maximize performance, Dell said in a separate statement today. The Dell Precision Performance Optimizer will come installed on some desktops and also be available for download.

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