CES 2015 may not have any huge wow moments — at least so far — but it’s proving to be a good place to see the world’s biggest tech brands giving their product ranges a solid refresh and reboot. Along with new Alienware gaming machines and Dell will have the world’s thinnest tablet on sale in Australia by the end of the month, with a beautiful screen to boot.
The star of Dell’s stand at CES actually isn’t a brand new announcement. It’s the Venue 8 7000 Series, and it’s an 8.4-inch OLED-screened Android tablet that’s a mere 6 millimetres thick. With an edge-to-edge display, and a single speaker bar running along the lower portrait-orientation bezel, it’s a striking-looking slate.
An Intel Atom Z3580 quad-core SoC runs the show, and other specs are broadly similar to competitors; 2GB of RAM and 16GB of onboard storage are par for the tablet course. That OLED screen has a surprisingly high resolution of 2560×1600 pixels, too, so you’ll be flattering the Android games and 1080p movies you load onto the Venue 8, as well as Google’s own Material Design apps — although just about the only downside is that it’s running Android 4.4 rather than 5.0 Lollipop. The Venue 8 7000 will be out in Oz on January 27, with prices starting from $499.
Dell’s Alienware 15 and 17 gaming laptops have also been treated to a do-over; both the 15 and 17 get new Intel quad-core i7s and Nvidia GTX 980M graphics, optional 4K panels and are about a fifth shorter than their predecessors. Both also support the Alienware Graphics Amplifier, so you can hook up your laptop to a powered desktop box housing a more powerful GPU for proper gaming — if you so desire, that is.
Both the 15 and 17 will be available to order — that is, you’ll be able to buy them, without any wait — from Dell’s site come next Monday, January 12. The Alienware 15 starts at $1999 and the 17 starts at $2499, although speccing up those high-res screens, more RAM, faster storage or a more powerful internal GPU will drive the price up by a little bit. Also, no-one except me cares about this, but it’s good to see Alienware opting for Killer network hardware rather than Intel’s standard Wi-Fi and Ethernet chipsets.
Dell’s regular ol’ XPS laptops get a bit of love, too, at CES 2015. Take a look at the new XPS 13, above — that is one sexy mainstream consumer laptop, with a 13-inch screen in a chassis that would usually only fit an 11. Dell promises a full 15 hours of battery life, too. It’s the same approach that the LG UltraPC takes — skinny, big screen, everyday Ultrabook specs — and that’s a machine that I’d love to see on my work desk every day.
There’s a 4K-screen-toting XPS 15, as well as updated Inspiron 15 7000 and 13 7000 2-in-1s on the way too, most of them by the end of this month. [Dell]