Dell has unveiled a new laptop-tablet hybrid device that will run Windows 8.1, the XPS 11.
The new hybrid is currently on display at the Taiwanese trade show, Computex. It resembles an ultrabook when open and a large tablet PC when flipped around.
Taking its lead from the Lenovo Yoga (and, to some extent, the Surface), the new Dell XPS 11 is essentially a tablet with a slim keyboard attached. It’s powered by the new Intel Core i5 Haswell processor and sports a USB 3 port, Thunderbolt port, SD card slot and an active stylus pen similar to the S-Pens we’ve seen on the Samsung Note range.
The 11.6-inch screen has a Gorilla Glass finish over its 2,560 x 1,440 IPS display. It can be folded back 360 degrees and clamped onto the keyboard to give it a more tablet-like shape. That makes it quite similar to the Yoga in terms of its design. But like the Surface, the keys are designed to have a low profile and look almost completely flat from the side.
Once the keyboard has been rotated, the key sensors automatically switch off so that the keys can’t be used by accident. It looks like a tablet, sure – but it’s a big, chunky tablet, and not the most portable in the world. Thanks to its carbon fibre case, the XPS 11 is fairly lightweight considering the amount of functionality it has. That strange, flat keyboard will take a little getting used to, but it is a little more substantial than the keyboard on the Surface.
Despite our reservations about its size, Dell’s XPS 11 looks like an impressive high-end tablet for Windows fans. Given the specs, we’re thinking it’s aimed at consumers with money to burn. We’re expecting to see it in stores around Christmas time. No official release date or pricing has been announced.