I went all in the other day and ordered a spanking new Dell XPS 12 Ultrabook. I wanted a portable with enough punch for me to sit in the living room with Anniken and play a few games, learn everything about NoSQL, post entries here and have enough screen estate to make the experience less crammed than it would on a netbook.

The Dell XPS 12 covers all those needs and more – with a flip of the screen it turns into a Windows 8 tablet, which will be an interesting experience. The Norwegian Dell site said “delivery before Christmas” and that pushed me over the buyer’s edge: A brand new gadget I could bring with me when visiting family this Christmas. So I placed the order and was very surprised when the estimated delivery date listed on my order status page was January 16, 2013.

The Norwegian Dell site. Spot the link.

The US Dell site with clear shipping dates.

It turned out that the text “delivery before Christmas” (“levering før jul” in Norwegian) was a link that took me to a page clearly stating that the XPS 12 Ultrabook could not be delivered before Christmas. How could I, a seasoned surfer of the interwebs, miss such an important detail?

It’s not really easy to tell that the link is, in fact, a link. I don’t know if Dell did this on purpose just to fuck with people, but they sure managed to screw me over. Now, I could probably cancel the order, but I wasn’t able to find anywhere on the Dell website to do that. Naturally. However, Norwegian law gives consumers who buy stuff on the internet 14 days after they have received the merchandise to change their minds, return whatever they bought and get the money back. Not a totally bad deal, so I think I’ll stick with it. There will be no gadget Christmas present for me this year, but – unless everything goes FUBAR in two weeks time – a nice happy-new-year-present.

I still think Dell Norway should reconsider their link text strategy, though, and perhaps display shipping infromation like Dell’s American site instead.