LAS VEGAS - Our favorite ultraportable business laptop just got a lot more flexible. Dell’s new XPS 13 2-in-1 is a super-compact hybrid laptop with a flip-back display, so you can use it like a tablet. It’s a variant of the standard XPS 13, which happens to be the best commuter-friendly laptop on the market. But this model does make a few concessions compared to the standard XPS 13 in order to accommodate the folding design.Dell XPS 13 2017 2-in-1
Like other systems in the XPS line, the XPS 13 2-in-1 sports a striking edge-to-edge display with razor-thin bezels. It looks great, and helps keep the system really compact ̶ a perk if you need to stuff it into a crowded work bag before your daily commute. In fact, the XPS 13 has a smaller footprint than any other 13-inch 2-in-1 laptop in the world, though competing laptops are thinner.
Of course, what sets this system apart from the standard XPS 13 is the rotating hinge, which gives you access to the system’s sharp 13.3-inch touch display. It’s nice for using touch-based apps, and since it features full pressure sensitivity you can even take notes right on the screen with Dell’s active stylus. I gave the stylus a go during a hands-on demo, and writing inside Microsoft’s OneNote app felt smooth and responsive.
But despite the XPS 13 2-in-1’s versatile design, we’ll probably continue to recommend the standard model for a couple of reasons. For starters, the 2-in-1 runs on Intel’s Y series processors, which aren’t as powerful as the U series chips you get in the non-convertible XPS 13.
On top of that, Dell pared down the port selection on the 2-in-1; you get a Thunderbolt 3 port (which can support up to two 4K monitors) and a USB Type-C port. There’s not a single full-size USB port (the standard model has two), which could be a big inconvenience depending on your needs.
Check back for a full review of the Dell XPS 13 2-in-1 very soon.