Durable soft touch design; Impressive battery life; Bright, vibrant display; Accurate handwriting recognition
Mediocre camera; Sluggish flash storage; No portable keyboard dock option
Dell's Atom-powered Latitude 10 tablet for business users offers all-day battery life and a host of add-ons that can make it your only PC.
The Dell Latitude 10 is a Windows 8 tablet that's tailor-made for business users. It's not only durable, it offers a host of security and manageability features IT managers will appreciate. Snap in the 4-cell battery, and you get a device that lasts all day -- and most of the night. Starting at $499 ($704 as configured), the Latitude 10 also works with an optional pen for taking notes on the go and using other pen-enabled apps, while the optional dock lets you connect a larger monitor. Can this tablet really do it all?
Weighing 1.6 pounds and measuring 10.8 x 7.0 x 0.4 inches, Dell's tablet is both larger and heavier than Acer's Iconia W510, which weighs 1.2 pounds and measures 10.2 x 7.3 x 0.4 inches. Strap on the Latitude's optional 4-cell battery pack and the Latitude 10's weight grows to 1.8 pounds, while its thickness increases to 0.6 inches. By comparison, the Microsoft's Surface Pro measures 10.81 x 6.81 x 0.53 inches and weighs 2 pounds.
PortsPulling out the Latitude 10's removable battery reveals the tablet's SIM card slot.
At 473 lux, the Latitude 10's display is plenty bright, easily outshining the category average of 365 lux. Neither the HP Envy x2, with its 306 lux, or the Iconia W510, and its 262 lux, were even close to the Latitude 10. The Surface Pro registered 394 lux.
Especially impressive was how well the Latitude 10 handled palm rejection. With our hands resting on the screen, we were able to accurately write sentences without the tablet's touch screen picking up any other input. In addition to the on-screen Windows 8 keyboard, the stylus also works with Microsoft's OneNote, available as a free download through the Windows Store.
Note that the Latitude 10 lacks a holster for the stylus, so you'll need to toss it in your bag -- and hope you don't lose it.
To pair the dock and Latitude, you simply plug the male end of the connector into the port in the bottom of the tablet. Unfortunately, when we connected the two, the Latitude 10 wobbled side to side. Dell says this give was meant to make docking easier.
As part of our test unit's Mobility Bundle, Dell included a full-size wireless keyboard and mouse. Both devices pair to the Latitude via a USB dongle. The wireless mouse has a unique design that features a detachable top for replacing the device's batteries held together with two small magnets. This makes changing the batteries easy, but we would prefer it if Dell made the magnets stronger. As it is now, the top can be removed far too easily.
The Dell Latitude support Intel's Platform Trust technology out of the box, as well as optional TPM security. There's also an optional fingerprint/Smart Card Reader combo. Dell says that data encryption is also available for this tablet.
After streaming a 15-minute Hulu video, the Latitude 10's back panel registered an average temperature of 82 degrees, well below the 95-degree threshold we consider uncomfortable. The Acer Iconia W510, on the other hand, hit a very warm 103 degrees in a couple of spots.
On the PCMark 7 benchmark, which tests a system's overall performance, the Dell Latitude 10 scored 1,440. Compared with more powerful tablets like Microsoft's Intel Core i5-equipped Surface Pro, which scored 4,721, the Latitude's performance seems dismal. But when put up against the similarly equipped HP Envy X2 and the Acer Iconia W510, which scored 1,428 and 1,305, respectively, the Latitude's performance looks much better.
Dell's decision to use 64GB of eMMC flash memory as the Latitude 10's main storage rather than a solid-state drive might have ensured a lower price tag, but it impacts the tablet's speed. For example, it took the Latitude 10 3 minutes and 52 seconds to complete the LAPTOP File Transfer test, which includes copying 4.97GB of media files. That's a rate of roughly 22 MBps.
If the Latitude 10's flash memory helped the system's performance anywhere it was with its boot time, which took just 16 seconds. That's the same amount of time it took to boot the Envy X2 and 4 seconds faster than the Iconia W510.
Business users who spend a lot of time poring over larger Excel spreadsheets may want to think twice before plunking down the cash for the Latitude 10. It took the tablet 29 minutes and 48 seconds to complete the LAPTOP OpenOffice Spreadsheet test, which matches 20,000 names to their corresponding addresses. That's well off of the 13:30 category average and only slightly better than the HP Envy X2's 29:54 and Acer Iconia W510's 29:56.
If you're looking to play even moderately taxing PC games like "World of Warcraft" on the Latitude 10, look elsewhere. The tablet's Intel Graphics Media Accelerator couldn't even run the 3DMark11 graphics benchmark, let alone load "Warcraft."
With the optional 4-cell battery ($55.30), the Latitude 10's battery life jumped to an incredible 17 hours and 40 minutes. That's better than the 15:09 the Acer W510 managed with its optional keyboard dock. The HP Envy X2, meanwhile, lasted 11:57 with its dock.
A 1080p video shot using the rear-facing camera was equally disappointing. Panning down the street caused the camera to refocus several times. The video also seemed to jump as we moved from left to right, as if it couldn't keep up with the action. Fortunately, the 2-megapixel front-facing camera didn't suffer from nearly as much distortion as its counterpart, though there was still pixelation.
Among Windows 8 tablets, the Latitude 10 has some pretty stiff competition. The Surface Pro is a lot faster, but ultimately falls flat because of its short battery life. However, the $679 ThinkPad Tablet 2 gives you a place to store its included pen and an optional mobile keyboard dock, making it a better potential laptop replacement. Overall, though, the Dell Latitude 10 has what it takes to satisfy business users who want to go all day on a charge.
|CPU||1.8-GHz Intel Atom Z2760 Processor|
|Storage Drive Size||64GB|
|Storage Drive Type||Flash Memory|
|Graphics Chip||Intel Graphics Media Accelerator|
|OS||Windows 8 Pro|
|Front-Facing Camera Resolution||1280 x720|
|Card Readers||SD Card|
|Card Reader Size||64GB|
|Warranty / Support||1 Year ProSupport and 1 Year NBD Limited Onsite Service After Remote Diagnosis|
|Size||10.8 x 7.0 x 0.4 ~ 0.6 inches|
|Weight||1.6 ~ 1.8 pounds|