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Nearly six years after they were introduced to the computer-buying public as a way to touch and try Dell computers before buying them, Dell’s kiosks are headed the way of VHS players – on the path to extinction.

It’s not a big surprise. You couldn’t actually buy a computer at the kiosks. You could just go in and look at them, and maybe type on the keyboard or click the mouse. Then you would have to go home, turn on a different computer and order your new Dell computer online.

It was like going to a restaurant, looking at the menu, deciding what you wanted to order and then having to go home and make dinner yourself.

Now that retailers like Wal-Mart, Best Buy and Staples are not only letting customers try the computers in-store but then also actually letting those same customers buy the machines and bring them home that very same day, what’s the use of the kiosks? Dell announced on Jan. 30 that it would close all 140 of them in the United States.