Dell launches new 14-inch XPS and Inspiron ultrabooks

Posted: 03 Aug 2012 08:48 PM PDT

Just after four months after Dell launched their first ultrabook in the Philippines, the PC company has introduced two new 14" ultrabooks that would give consumers more option to choose from.

First up is the Dell Inspiron 14z. This machine is aimed at the budget-conscious market who wants a taste of ultrabook goodness without spending too much. Apart from meeting Intel's minimum standards for an ultrabook, Dell has also thrown in some features to differentiate Inspiron 14z from the rest of the pact. The ultrabook is said to keep you company for up to 7 hours on a single full charge.

At a glance, this ultrabook may be mistaken for an ordinary laptop but looking closely at its specs will solidify its place in that category.

Dell Inspiron 14z specs:
14.0" HD Widescreen, 200-nit (1366×768) 720p
3rd Gen Intel Core i5-3317U Processor (3M Cache, up to 2.60 GHz) or
3rd Gen Intel Core i7-3517U processor (4M cache, up to 3.0 GHz)
1x 4GB 1600MHz DDR3 RAM (Standard) expandable up to 8GB (Optional, 2x 4GB)
Intel HD Graphics 4000 + AMD Radeon HD 7750M 1GB GDDR5
2 Skullcandy Speakers with Waves MaxxAudio 4 processing
500GB 5400rpm hard drive + 32GB mSATA SSD
Onboard tray-loading DVD+/-RW (standard)
RJ45, HDMI v1.4a, USB 3.0 PowerShare,
USB 2.0 ports
3-in-1 Memory Card slot
Intel Centrino Wireless-N 1030
Bluetooth v3.0+HS (standard)
Built-in 1.0MP HD webcam w/ digital microphone
44 WHr Prismatic Battery
Dimension (H x W x D): 20.7mm – 21.0mm x 347mm x 240mm
Weight: 4.12 lbs

We ran a Windows Experience Index for the Insprion 14z and here's the result.

Next up is the XPS 14, which is the big brother of the XPS 13 that was just launched four months ago. Though both Ultrabooks bares similarities, there are also a handful of differences between the two besides the screen size.

The XPS 14 is a fine piece of hardware which boasts a machined aluminum body with magnesium palm rest and a very crisp and bright 900p, 400-nit 14" True Life Infinity display protected from scratches by the tough edge-to-edge Corning Gorilla Glass. Although the XPS 14 is still lighter compared to typical laptops, its 4.6lbs weight ranks the second heaviest Ultrabook in the market right now, with the heaviest being the HP Envy 6t-1000 ultrabook. Dell promises up to 11 hours of normal use of the XPS 14.

Dell XPS 14 specs:
14.0″ HD+, 400-nit (1600 x 900) True Life Infinity Display
3rd Gen Intel Core i5-3317U Processor (3M Cache, up to 2.60 GHz) or
3rd Gen Intel Core i7-3517U processor (4M cache, up to 3.0 GHz)
1x 4GB 1333MHz DDR3 RAM expandable up to 8GB (optional, 2 x 4GB)
Intel 4000 HD Graphics + NVidia GeForce GT 630M with 1GB GDDR5 VRAM
2 x 2W speakers + Waves MaxxAudio 4
500GB 5400rpm HDD + 32GB mSATA SSD
OR 512GB SSD (optional)
Spill-resistant, backlit keyboard
RJ45 LAN port
HDMI v1.4a
2 x USB 3.0 PowerShare
mini-Display port
3-in-1 Memory Card slot
Intel® Centrino® Wireless-N 1030 with Bluetooth v3.0+HS (standard)
Built-in 1.3MP HD webcam w/ Dual Array Microphone
8-Cell Li-Polymer 69WHr battery
Dimension (H x W x D): 20.7mm x 335.8mm x 233mm
Weight: 4.6lbs

Both of these ultrabooks are already available at Dell Concept Stores and authorized retailers nationwide. The Inspiron 14z sells for Php44,990 and the XPS 14 with base configuration goes for Php68,990.

BlackBerry Playbook 4G to be announced on August 9

Posted: 03 Aug 2012 08:23 PM PDT

We've recently featured a 10.1" tablet that is believed to be the next Blackberry Playbook and apparently there is some truth to this. Today RIM announced that they will be releasing the Blackberry Playbook 4G on the 9th of this month.

Although not the 10-inch tablet that we've mentioned on our previous post, RIM will be releasing the 4G version of the 7-inch Blackberry Playbook which is also shown in the leaked photos here.

The LTE slate will initially be released in Canada and there's still no word about its pricing or if the tablet will ship to other parts of the world. But apart from having SIM card slot for a 4G LTE connectivity and a major bump on its processor which is now a dual-core 1.5GHz, the new Playbook remains pretty much the same as the previous model.

We're not sure what RIM's up to, but we're guessing that these are the unsold units from last year. The logic is quite simple actually, take a solidly built 7" tablet, rig it with a more powerful processor and throw an LTE capability for good measure and Voila! The company got itself a more marketable slate. But how this will fare in the Canadian market is still remains to be seen.