Excerpt: I've been using the Dell Inspiron Duo for over a month, and while it is not the best netbook/tablet I have ever used, it is good for what it is. The device came with Windows 7 along with some Dell built-in software which tried and failed to make touch relevant. So, because of that, the software aspect of this review will be based around Windows 8 Consumer Preview. The default Windows 7 OS just doesn't do this device any justice whatsoever.
Conclusion: The Dell Inspiron Duo is far more powerful than most notebooks, but the inclusion of a keyboard and the rest makes it a lot less easy to live with than the likes of the iPad.
Pros: The Inspiron Duo packs more power than the average netbook: its dual-core processor and reasonably beefy integrated graphics chip can handle the sort of HD video clips that would have most mini laptops chugging like Stephenson's Rocket. The screen is also deliciously hi-res at 1366 x 768. The design is also reassuringly rugged: the screen stays firmly in position whether its rotated to tablet or netbook mode, and the casing sports a finger-friendly rubberised finish. ...
Cons: Windows 7 isn't as geared up for touch as iOS or Android, and as a consequence the Inspiron Duo's interface isn't quite as slick as some rivals'. The screen's viewing angle is also limited, with colours and brightness dropping off once your bounce moves even slightly off-centre. The hybrid design also brings some issues along with it: while 1.5kg isn't heavy by netbook standards, it's very bulky for a tablet.
Conclusion: The flip screen implementation is an original and refreshing take on the convertible tablet, but the Dell Inspiron Duo completely ignored the part about features and tablet performance.
Pros: Innovative convertible tablet design. High-resolution screen. Excellent keyboard and mouse button combination. Sturdy netbook. 2GB of DDR3 memory included. Fast-spinning hard drive.
Cons: Bare-bones feature set. Small, non-removable battery. Poor battery life. Touch functionality is flawed and sluggish. Components are not equipped to handle Windows 7 Home Premium. Cluttered with third-party and proprietary software.
Excerpt: Love the idea of a tablet, but can’t bear to part with your keyboard? Well, Dell has heard your plea and developed the “convertible” Inspiron Duo ($550) netbook in the hopes of bringing you the best of both worlds. As a laptop, the Inspiron Duo features a 10.1-inch HD (1366 x 768) display, 1.3 MP integrated Webcam, 1.5GHz Intel Atom dual core processor, 250GB HDD, 2 USB ports and 2GB of ram. It also comes with Windows 7 Home Premium installed.
Conclusion: The flip screen implementation is an original and refreshing take on the convertible tablet, but the Dell Inspiron Duo underwhelms when it comes to features and tablet performance.
Pros: Clever and refreshing take on convertible tablet design. High resolution screen. Excellent keyboard and mouse button combination. Sturdy netbook. 2GB of DDR3 memory included. Fast-spinning hard drive
Cons: Bare-bones feature set. Battery is small and not user-removable. Poor battery life. Touch performance is sluggish. Components can't handle Windows 7 Home Premium. Cluttered with 3rd party and proprietary software.
Excerpt: You can’t deny Dell some hard-fought gee-whiz cred with the new Inspiron Duo . In a world of commoditized portables, it is nothing if not a unique product. Show it off to your friends; it looks like a netbook, and you pop open the laptop-like clamshell and wait for the bored expression to appear. Then comes the sucker punch: you rotate the screen horizontally within its frame and snap the laptop back shut. Ta-da, it’s a freakin’ tablet, bro! People are duly impressed.
Conclusion: In our SiSoftware Sandra tests, the Inspiron Duo put up some decent scores, but compared to what we're seeing from AMD's Fusion processors and other ULV CPU options, the Atom N550 seems somewhat pokey. It didn't shatter records in any department, and it performed particularly poorly in gaming-related tests.
Review Dell Inspiron duo Convertible Netbook/Tablet
13 January 2011
Summary: Innovative. The well thought-out screen-flip design of the Inspiron duo 10" convertible notebook/tablet is an interesting innovation. But does this mean that has Dell crafted the finest convertible yet or just another high-tech toy?
Pros: Stylish Design and Nice Feel, Refined Screen-Flip Concept, Broadcom CrystalHD Decoder, Clearly Labeled Keyboard, Optional Accessories, Comfortable to Use
Cons: Few Accessories Included, Poor Display Quality, Glossy Screen, Short Battery Life, Limited Potential for Upgrades (7mm HDD), Few Ports, Slow Dell duo Stage UI (Tablet Interface), High Entry-Level Price
Summary: While the gorgeous rubberized chassis and responsive touchscreen make the Inspiron Duo seem compelling, its short battery life, sluggish touch software, mediocre media playback, and lack of ports make it a tough sell. For much less than the Duo's $549 price, we recommend buying either a dedicated tablet such as the iPad, a high-quality netbook such as the discrete-graphics-packing ASUS Eee PC 1215N, or a sleek ultraportable such as the Toshiba T235.
Pros: Attractive, sturdy design, Responsive touch screen, Good netbook performance
Cons: Sluggish touch software, Short battery life, No video-out or memory card slot on unit