From the Journal: Default Lines Pressuring Microsoft, PC Makers Team Up With Its Software Rivals (paid reg)
From the article:
Google is in serious negotiations to get its software installed on millions of Dell PCs before they are shipped to users, according to people familiar with the matter. Under the deal being discussed, Google, of Mountain View, Calif., could pay Dell fees approaching $1 billion over three years, these people estimate. The terms might change and the discussions could fail.
….Already, a consumer setting up a new H-P computer, for example, has the option to sign up for Earthlink’s broadband access, AOL’s online service, Symantec antivirus software and videogames from a start-up company named WildTangent. Those companies pay H-P a set fee or a share of revenue, say executives at the companies. H-P also auctions off its space: Google pays it $1 for every PC that ships with a Google toolbar — a strip that sits atop a browser and enables users to easily operate Google’s search engine — and another 75 cents the first time a home-computer user taps the service, says a person familiar with the matter.
Under a scenario Google and Dell are discussing, Dell would set up PCs to run a few Google products straight out of the box, including software to search PC hard drives and its toolbar browser.