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CES 2015

Dell XPS 13 Hands On: Is this the Best Notebook in 2015?



The Dell XPS 13 is an insanely impressive notebook and it is the most exciting device I’ve used in 2015. Dell managed to elegantly stuff a 13.3-inch display into a notebook that is about the size of an 11-inch MacBook Air, pair it with a beautiful edge-to-edge infinity display that is available in up to Quad HD+ display and wrap the entire package in premium materials.

At $799 for the entry-level model Dell XPS 13, you might wonder what the catch is, and how Dell is able to deliver such an attractive package at $200 less than the 13-inch MacBook Air. It’s hard to understand how Dell is able to sell this notebook for $799 because it feels more like a $1,000 laptop and it includes many of the features you would expect in a notebook that costs much more.

Check out our Dell XPS 13 hands-on to see why this small notebook shines.

Check out our Dell XPS 13 hands-on to see why this small notebook shines.

All of the Dell XPS 13 models include the 5th Gen Intel Core i processors, with a Core i3 in the entry-level $799 model and an Intel Core i5 in the $999 model that Dell says can deliver 15 hours of battery life. Even when you upgrade to the Touch enabled Quad HD+ display the notebook should last all day with 11 hours of quoted battery life.

Watch our Dell XPS 13 Hands on video below to see what we like about this new Windows notebook, and why it’s an exciting start to 2015.

Another wow moment when picking up the Dell XPS 13 at CES 2015 was just how light the notebook is. Earlier this week I held the Lenovo LaVie Z, which weighs just 1.74 pounds, but it is $1,299 just to get in the door. The Dell XPS 13 is about a pound heavier, but it is still lighter than a 13-inch Macbook Air. The new Dell XPS 13 weighs 2.6 pounds in the standard configuration and 2.8 pounds with touch.

The 1080P display on the entry-level model looks great, but the Touch Quad HD+ display really delivers a stunning canvas to look at while you work. the entry-level model features a matte style display that uses Sharp IGZO technology to boost the battery life out to the 15 hour mark.

The XPS 13 design is top-notch.

The XPS 13 design is top-notch.

The new Precision touchpad feels much nicer than on most Windows notebooks and seems to solve the nagging pains that many Windows 8 notebooks suffer from when it comes time to use the touchpad. The full size backlit keyboard feels good in our initial hands on, with a good amount of travel and excellent spacing for such a small notebook.

Dell offers a metal finish on the outside of the notebook and a wonderful soft touch Carbon fiber material on the palm rest that is a welcome change from metal on the MacBook Air.

Check out the rest of our CES 2015 coverage to see the latest gadgets, accessories, smartphones and other cool tech for 2015.

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