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Gladden said Dell realizes that it needs to make more investments in software R&D and sales, and that it is making progress.
"The operating loss, that's what we expected when we set up the business," he said.
Dell's end-user computing business, which includes desktops, mobile PCs and thin clients, saw revenue fall 9 percent over last year to $8.9 billion, Sweet said.
The desktop and thin client revenue fell 2 percent, but Sweet said the trajectory of the business is improving thanks in part to new all-in-one desktop PC designs. Dell's mobility business is down 16 percent year-to-year thanks to customer demand moving away from traditional notebook PCs toward alternative mobile solutions. That mobile PC sales drop led to a 6-percent fall in end-user software and peripheral sales as well, he said.
Dell executives declined to provide future guidance, citing uncertainties around the planned privatization as the reason.