News broke today of the new Dell Inspiron Duo – a combination netbook and tablet. Does it look cool? Yes. Will it actually be cool? We’ll see.
Here are the specs. A 10.1″ screen, Intel dual-core Atom N550 processor, 2GB of RAM, and 250GB hard drive. Those are especially good for a netbook. It will also run Windows 7 Home Premium – another step up from the normal netbook OS. Like any Dell PC it can be customized with such things as a larger hard drive.
The next most important thing, after specs, is looks. Here, of course, it’s all up to personal tastes. If you wanted a closer look you can find a hands on with plenty of closeup pictures over on Engadget. It’s available in three colors – blue, black, and red. As you have probably guessed from the picture above, the screen rotates around to transform the netbook into a tablet – just flip the screen 180 degrees and close the lid. The touch interface for the tablet was designed by Dell and looks clean and simple.
So, is this the best of the netbook and tablet worlds combined? It has promise. The hardware specs are good. The box seems to have a nice look and the choice of colors, while not uncommon in the laptop world, is new to the tablet business. Windows 7 may not be the best tablet interface, but it’s standard for netbooks and probably perfectly usable for the tablet. It seems like a good alternative for those who want to use a tablet while traveling, but need a real keyboard to get some work done. At $549 it’s a bit pricey, but not prohibitively so. I’m intrigued, but not entirely sold yet. I certainly plan to try one out though.