Dell CEO Michael Dell doesn't think his firm's PCs are "bad" simply because the company focuses on budget-priced machines.

Speaking to CNet, he explains: "We spend about as much as Apple in R&D. Just because we sell a whole lot more doesn't mean we're bad. I thought that was part of the objective."

He is discussing the company's research and development plans in the interview, which was first spotted by MacMinute. "Innovation", he says, "doesn't just occur in the lab."

"There's this misnomer that companies that spend more on R&D are somehow better and more successful, but there isn't a lot of data to support that."

Dell also asserts that his company spends half a billion dollars a year – "similar to the amount Apple spends."

But while Apple strains to maintain innovation and generate solid technological advancements such as FireWire and Rendezvous, Dell's focus is to "spend what we need to spend to accomplish what we need to accomplish."