Bragging rights in the PC industry have shifted from being cheap on price to efficient with energy.
Dell on Wednesday announced energy efficiency targets for its laptops and desktop PCs: a 25 percent reduction by 2010 based on the efficiency rating of today's models.
In about a month, it will set out an efficiency target for its server line as well, according to Albert Esser, vice president of power and infrastructure solutions at Dell.
For a sign of what more energy-efficient PCs from Dell may look like, Esser pointed to the ultrasmall PC which CEO Michael Dell showed off in April at the "Fortune Brainstorm: Green" conference in Los Angeles. That machine takes up 80 percent less space and consumes 70 percent less than one of Dell's minitower PCs.
With high energy costs and more concerns over the environmental impact of computing, many computer vendors are pushing energy efficiency in their product development and marketing.
Esser said Dell's efficiency program is driven by customer demand for less expensive equipment and Dell's own environmental stewardship program. Dell intends to be carbon-neutral from its operations by the end of this year.
To reach its 25 percent reduction goal, Dell will continue to improve on existing development in hardware and firmware, including power management, efficient fans, and better power supplies.