computer hybrid

By Rieva Lesonsky

A few years ago as we emerged from the Great Recession, small businesses were slow to invest in technology, not realizing that new tech could actually make their businesses more efficient and their staff (and themselves) more productive.

Eventually entrepreneurs got the message and started investing in new software and cloud technology. That was great—but it really wasn’t enough. Yes, buying new software is vital to success and growth. And cloud technology enables businesses to do more while spending less and to access important information anywhere at any time.

But overlooked in much of this was hardware. Too many small businesses stubbornly stuck with outdated machines, wondering why productivity and efficiency still lagged. The key to successfully leveraging technology is to not be penny-wise and pound-foolish. It only makes sense if you’re spending money on new software, you invest in new hardware as well.

And the good news—today prices are so reasonable you can update both your software and hardware—and not break the budget. One way to ensure you stick to your budget is to invest in versatile products that ultimately save money.

For instance, take a look at Dell’s XPS 12 2-in-1 laptop. The computer Dell sent me to review was a beauty to behold. Lightweight and innovative this hybrid computer gives users a true 2-in-1 experience—you get two devices—a laptop and a tablet—for the price of one.

The laptop weighs in at a mere 2.8 pounds and easily converts to a tablet, so neither you nor your employees needs two devices, which saves money (and bulk when traveling).

The Dell XPS 12 is not a lightweight when it comes to power or productivity. It has an Intel 6th generation processor, two cameras and an incredibly sharp 4K UHD display. Dell says it’s the only 2-in-1 with a 4K display—and the screen sharpness really makes a difference. When you’re in tablet mode the 12.5-inch 4K display belies the fact you’re using a portable device. In fact Dell says there are six million more pixels than on a full HD display.

The computer features an innovative design that allows you to easily detach the screen from the keyboard to convert from laptop to tablet. There are no hinges on the computer—the screen seamlessly connects with the laptop making it so easy and convenient to use, especially when on the go.

The XPS 12 comes with a “mobility base” which includes a full-size backlit (so essential) keyboard and “precision touchpad”. Many people who use 2-in-1 devices or 12-inch laptops complain about having to deal with a cramped keyboard. Not here. The keys are larger than you’d expect and are slightly concave, making typing a snap. And this is not a device built for casual usage—instead it’s built for business, featuring best-in-class security.

Dell also sent me the Dell Thunderbolt Dock which allows you to connect the XPS 12 to as many as three display and five additional peripherals. The Thunderbolt Dock allows you to charge your computer and enable faster data transfer and enhanced video performance. All using a single USB cable that gives you eight times the transfer speed and twice the video bandwidth of any other cable—and it charges your device—all at the same time.

For the ultimate in efficiency (and saving money), if you use the Dell XPS 12 and the Thunderbolt Dock to connect to a monitor you have a desktop computer with all the power you need. Dell sent me a Dell UltraSharp 32 Ultra HD 4k Monitor to test as well. It is stunning. The resolution is so clear—and the size of the monitor enables me to multitask with ease.

So when you think about it, this package offers you a 3-in-1 device: laptop, tablet and desktop. This is truly computing made easy.

In part two of this two-part series, I’ll tell you about my personal experiences with the Dell XPS 12.