Do you like to watch nerds argue about laptops on Twitter? Well, get ready for a storm of anger and passion, because Dell’s upcoming XPS 13 Plus laptop doesn’t have a trackpad. Also, its function row is a touchscreen that can turn into media controls, sort of like the MacBook Pro Touch Bar. Oh, and its speakers are hidden under the keyboard.
We’re looking at a perfect storm here—the ultimate laptop to piss off XPS nerds and PC purists. The Dell XPS 13 Plus isn’t some experimental anomaly like the ZenBook Duo; it’s the next generation of XPS design. Not only that, but it’s the most powerful XPS 13 to date, and Dell’s first XPS 13 to run a 12th Gen Intel Core processor.
The new XPS 13 Plus also has a ton of improvements that Dell nerds would love to have in a more traditional laptop. There’s improved airflow and larger fans, haptic feedback for the “trackpad” area at the palm rest, 4K display configurations with 500 nits of brightness, and extra-fast charging that brings you from 0% to 80% in under an hour.
Personally, I love the Dell XPS 13 Plus design. It’s the kind of thing that I expected Apple to do years ago. But I’m also a bit wary of these changes—can I set my wrists on the “trackpad” area without triggering an accidental input? How do you right-click? Will crumbs hurt the under-keyboard speakers?
I’m sure that Dell will answer these questions as PC dorks rage online. In the meantime, I’ll gladly wait for spring of 2022, when the XPS 13 Plus launches at a starting price of $1,199. Dell says that laptop will be available with Windows 11 or Ubuntu 20.04.