Dell XPS 12 Windows 8 Hybrid Ultrabook Review

Dell XPS 12 Windows 8 Hybrid Ultrabook Review

Dell XPS 12 is a hybrid Ultrabook, which delivers beauty and performance at costly price. Designed with flexible screen, switch to a tablet instantly in seconds. We are watching from long time, how Laptops are slowly overrun by Tablets. Compare to Laptop’s and Ultrabook, Tablets are handier. This gave birth to hybrid Tablet PC which is near to Ultrabooks. Hybrid Tablet features a detachable or non-detachable keyboard. Through which you can have some laptop like features (a dedicated keyboard). Dell XPS 12 belongs to the same hybrid category. It is unique in it is own style. Lavish look and extreme performance is two important features that are compromised at no cost. It is loaded with Intel Core i5-3317U processor, 4GB DDR3 RAM, upto 250GB SSD Storage and 64bit Windows 8 OS. And of course a swivel flip screen locked firmly by magnetic latches. Dell XPS 12 comes under the list of most costly Ultrabook. But is it definitely worth buying in terms of feature it offers. Check out the specs glimpse below before we move ahead for more detail review.




  • Windows 8 x64
  • 12.5 inch LED Backlit Touch Display with True Life and FHD resolution (1920 x 1080)
  • 1.3MP webcam; 1280 x 1024 pixels with dual digital-array digital microphones
  • Supports 3rd Generation Intel Core i5 Processor
  • 4GB/8GB Dual Channel DDR3 Memory
  • Mobile Intel QS77 Express Chipset
  • Intel HD Graphics 4000
  • Up to 256GB Solid State hard drive
  • 47WHr battery; 6-Cell Lithium Ion
  • 1x USB 3.0 port, 1x USB 3.0 port with PowerShare and Windows debugging, 1x mini-display port 1x headphone/microphone combo port.




It has a durable body. Recently we got chance to test some more hybrid tablet where, we were not completely satisfied with the body. It was weak covered with plastic enclosure. While in XPS 12 we have a better body (that adds more to the weight). Lots of things contribute to the weight. It lies around 1.54kg that is bit heavy to carry in terms of Tablet. Non-Detachable keyboard is one of among them. Dell has designed XP12 with durable elements. The body consists of elements like Aluminum and Carbon fiber. There is no plastic used on the body. That is the reason the tablet is heavy. Since the device is costly making it durable is another thing which matters the most. The screen size is 12.5inch covered with bonded Corning Gorilla Glass. This keeps scratches away. While even if you accidently drop some objects like mobile, pen, etc on the screen it will not damage. The screen is fixed inside a frame that helps to rotate it completely towards back. The edges of Ultrabook have powerful magnets which locks it well inside the frame. It is a full LED Backlit Touch Display with True Life and FHD resolution (1920×1080). Simply great for movies and games. The graphic is powered by Intel HD Graphics 4000 video chip. In CPUz the dedicated video memory is shown around 1795MB. So that is near to a 2GB video memory available on Intel QS77 Chipset. No doubt the screen is awesome. The touch is well optimized that needs minimum effort to use Windows 8.



Backlit keyboard and Touchpad are easily accessible. Due to backlit keys it is possible to use them well under low light. The keys are soft and well placed with definitive gaps. Due to précised placement typing is comfortable. Due to ample of gaps and a smooth surface near the touchpad the palm rest well. So that there is no strain on your wrist/palm while typing for long time. Touchpad support Multi-Gesture. It has a big area to move fingers well on the all sides. The same touchpad can be used to zoom in/ zoom out images, rotate images, scrolling, etc. The package content comes with Windows 8 manual that will help you to understand the touch gestures.



XPS 12 is having a single front camera of 1.3MP that gives maximum resolution of 1280 x 1024 pixels. The camera is accompanied by Mic. For video chatting the front camera offers reasonable output. This place where XPS 12 falls low on feature. I was expecting at least 3MP or 5MP camera on it. For connectivity XPS 12 offers 2x USB 3.0 ports for better data transfer speed with mini display port and a headphone jack. Being a costly Ultrabook the second most important feature it misses is an Ethernet Port. Because compare to wifi, still LAN in India is the most common way of connectivity. Which is already ignored in many hybrid and ultra book models?





As per the specification Dell XPS 12 is an extreme machine. Windows 8 works best on it. It is well optimized with smooth touch support and has no freezing problem. We tested numerous applications on it and few games. You can check that in our video review section. Due to Core i5 processor and Mobile Intel QS77 Express Chipset the tablet gains more over others.  I will not say that this is good for gaming, but it can be termed as a mid range performer due to 64bit architecture. The QS77 Express Chipset by Intel adds features like USB 3.0 data transfer protocol compared to older one. Along the additional benefit you will get is Intel Rapid Storage Technology with RAID, Small Business Advantage, Performance Tuning Utility, Anti-Theft Technology, etc. The chipset is an ideal platform for portable devices which are designed only for performance. Benchmarking test was satisfying on it. You can see the below chart that shows the result we got on different benchmarking tools.



Benchmarking results:


  • CrystalDisk : Maximum Read Speed : 466.5 MB/s. Maximum Write Speed : 222.3 Mb/s
  • NovBench : Overall Score : 505

Web surfing and Multimedia output is also awesome. Due to HD playback you can view great quality movies on it without missing the actual resolution. The speaker output is better. The volume is enough high that removes the requirement of desktop speakers.


Battery Power:


Dell XPS 12 offers standard battery output. The model that we tested has a 47Whr battery. This means once fully charge you can expect around 5 to 6 hrs battery output. If you are watching movies or surfing on web or any other process that is battery intensive you can get around 4hrs of constant power. That makes the tablet bit low on usage, but it looks enough to me. Being a high performance tablet at one end we might need to compromise with the battery output.  So while travelling it is wise to carry a portable charge with you. That can offer you more 2 to 3 hours of battery output.




Dell XPS 12 is one of the most durable Ultra books available today. It offers high end hardware configuration with durable body and bright LED screen protected by Gorilla Glass. The cost of Dell XPS 12 is around Rs.1,10,590. There 4 more models available under this series that offers you higher end configuration. The cheapest one comes for Rs.95,590 with features 128GB SSD. If you are seriously looking for a professional ultra book with good performance and durability then XPS 12 is an ideal choice.



  • Extreme Performance
  • Great HD LED Screen
  • Durable Body Design
  • Comfortable Keyboard and Touchpad
  • Flexible Tablet Mode
  • Good battery life



  • No Ethernet Port
  • No SD Card Slot
  • Heavy Weight
  • High Price



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here