That bothers me. You act like people would rather carry around batteries than just get good performance out of the one installed into their system. As a college student - I'll take as little extra items in my bag as I can afford. I still have to have room for books. I didn't buy my 9300 because I wanted to "save a few bucks". I bought my 9300 because I simply didn't need the 256mb card and the bells and whistles of what is essentially a portable gaming machine. As long as I can run my P2P, utilities, office software, and the occasional UT2004 game I'm going to be happy. I don't demand 90fps at 1900xBLAH to be happy. If you feel okay paying for performance you're going to use - then by all means be my guest. The XPS is not essentially better than the 9300 - it has to do with what people want and need. You don't give a teenage a hummer (I'm talking about the car, people) as a first car. Sure they'll be safe - but what do they have to look forward to. They don't need it. Just like some 9300 users don't need the XPS.
All things being equal, let's assume both system undervold very well. The fact is that the XPS has equipment that requires more power and thus more heat. Don't believe me? Well, you can't tell me your XPS gets better battery life than my 9300. More power = more heat - that's a fact for you to nibble on. Another fact is that Dell requires the 9 cell battery because anything less would disappoint customers left and right.
This part makes me angry. You think just because Dell makes you get the high end graphic card that it's going to be upgradeable in the future? That's not a fact, that's an absolute slanted argument. Both laptops are built on the same core. The only difference being the exterior design and required stock components because the laptops are GEARED FOR DIFFERENT AUDIENCES. I'm not so sure EXTREME GAMERS would be happy with an inspiron 9300.
Regarding your lines analogy, I don't see your point. In the end everyone goes back to K-Mart to exchange their gifts for something they want. If you offered to give me $5 for every $1 in my wallet.... I'd file in line every time. It has nothing to do with the principle of being "better", it has everything to do with economic fundamentals and intrinsic/innate value. It's a known fact that the XPS systems ship with high end components (not being able to order <2.0 ghz proc etc).
Put that in your pipe and smoke it. FLAME BAIT!
I’m hard on you because I love you, and want you to become a better person. You’d slap your best friend if he continued to call a television psychic for $1.99 a minute, wouldn’t you? Now you see my motive in my post. Elitism never got anyone anywhere.
“Welcome to the new millennium where debt is dumb, cash is king, and the paid off home mortgage has replaced the BMW as the status symbol of choice.” – Dave Ramsey
P.S. My computer was $1400.00 (includes tax and shipping) and I have a processor that is faster than yours. Had I opted for the same GPU, screen, and ordered the RAM myself, I still would have come out a lot cheaper than your XPS. Again, it's a prefference thing. Some people like to throw money at the issue, some people like to use their heads. I'm the latter rather than the former.