XPS 12 Two Week Update
For those still interested in what I think of the Dell XPS 12 two weeks in (see here for the two-day report), a few quick additional notes:
* I still very much like it, generally. Good screen, good keyboard, quick responsiveness, etc, with the trackpad (now with updated drivers and configured to my personal preferences) perfectly functional although still not the absolute joy the Apple trackpads are. However, if you are not totally into the tank for Apple (or at least its trackpads), in the realm of Win8 ultrabooks, this is a fine little machine.
* I’m finding uses for the machine’s “tablet mode,” in particular using it to show off pictures and media to folks in a less awkward form factor than “shove the laptop at someone.” I also do find the tablet mode comfortable and easy to use when all I’m doing is reading. I understand some people think the 9:16 ratio in portrait mode is too tall for comfortable reading, but I’m not one of those people. Likewise, it’s heavier than an iPad or other tablets, but as noted before I don’t find myself holding or using it like other tablets, so I don’t really notice the weight as a drawback. Also, the two ridges on the bottom of the computer (there to be “feet” for the computer and to allow airflow for vents) help to comfortably cradle it on my leg when I have it in portrait mode. I use the XPS 12 in tablet mode enough that I find myself using my other tablets less, which I think says something.
* One thing the XPS falls down on with its flippy screen thing is that when I turn the screen all the way around in laptop mode, it doesn’t rotate the screen, so the images are upside down. It’s not supposed to do that; it’s supposed to automatically flip. I suspect a future update will fix this if it’s not just me not figuring out something.
* Win8’s user interface continues to be less than useful, but I’m finding it slightly less annoying on a laptop/tablet than on a desktop; either that or I’m simply getting used to it.
So in all, works well and I’m happy with my purchase.
That said, I’ve been using it exclusively at home to this point; the real acid test for this machine comes six weeks from now when I take it on the road with me for the better part of a month on my book tour. I’m looking forward to seeing how I feel about it at the end of that trip. I will of course let you all know.