The wait for the Dell XPS 13 2-in-1 is now over, as it is officially on sale as of Thursday, August 8. In addition to bringing an encouraging refresh to Dell’s 2-in-1 product line in the form of a device with respectable performance, worthy of sharing a name with its flagship cousin, it notably marks the debut of the first of the long-awaited Intel 10th-generation processors.
Although challenges in production scaling have prevented Intel from staging a massive release of its 10th-generation CPUs, alternatively known by their “Ice Lake” moniker, Intel gave Dell the go-ahead to put them at the heart of its latest convertible laptop product, and the CPU seems to shine as far as hands-on testing so far has indicated.
Intel fans were understandably disappointed at the revelation that Ice Lake desktop chips will not land in consumer devices anytime soon, but the mobile Ice Lake chip that ships in the XPS 13 2-in-1 is proving to be no consolation prize. In fact, leaks from a test of an Ice Lake i7 CPU running in an HP Spectre x360 laptop shows clear areas of strength over AMD’s powerhouse Ryzen 9 3900X chip, to say nothing of the kinds of hardware that the Ice Lake mobile series is more likely to face head-to-head via comparable consumer devices.
While the device has not been run through the gauntlet enough to confirm this impressive level of competitive performance outside the lab, it fares well enough to give something for consumers to look forward to in the more than 30 additional laptops with Ice Lake slated to arrive by this year’s holiday season.
Excitement over the first glimpse of Ice Lake aside, the XPS 13 2-in-1 is also a capable device in its own right. The laptop features a prominent, gorgeous, and overall bigger touchscreen hemmed in by tiny bezels, giving it a sleek form. Higher-spec configurations also showcase stunning new Gen11 graphics, which are still a relative rarity in consumer laptops.
The only real place where the device lags is in the fact that at $999, the base model only sports a dual-core i3. Still, the gains that come with the upgrade, from quad-core Ice Lake chips to Gen11 graphics, make it a notable entry among Dell’s already solid products.