Dell XPS18 tablet all-in-one
Dell XPS18 – an original take on the Windows 8 tablet

Hat’s off to Dell for coming up with an original new device. The XPS 18 is a Windows 8 tablet with a giant 18-inch display, add a wireless keyboard and it becomes a touch-screen all-in-one PC. Dell describes it as a portable all-in-one.

While the XPS 18 is heavy as tablets go at around 2.3kg, that’s light by PC standards. The price is keen too – the device sells in the US for US$900 so by the time it reaches New Zealand it’ll be at the low-end of the all-in-one price range, mind you the keyboard and mouse are extras.

Dell thinks there’s a market for a desktop computer that consumers can carry around the house. Well maybe, presumably the company has done some market research before unleashing a new format on the market. I can see potential in the office – especially in companies that expect workers to do traditional PC-type work. The larger screen and tablet functionality are just as useful at work as at play.

Perhaps the most interesting aspect of Dell’s announcement is how after years of boring designs, PC makers are moving beyond the boundaries of desktops and laptops, exploring exciting new directions. No doubt some will fail, but the experimentation is healthy.

The first versions of the XPS 18 are underpowered with just 4GB Ram and a Pentium processor. Stick a proper power plant in one of these and I could be interested.

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