Dell believes that low-cost Windows 10 tablets still have a place for business, which is why it is refreshing the Venue 10 and Venue 8 Pro, two Intel Atom-powered business slates that cost less than $500. Starting at $429, the Venue 10 Pro is less expensive than competitors such as the $499 Microsoft Surface 3, but should offer performance on a par with Microsoft's slate.
Like its predecessor, the Venue 10 Pro has a 10.1-inch 1920 x 1200-pixel display with 10-point capacitive touch. The 8-inch model (starting at $249) will come standard with a 1280 x 800-pixel capacitive touch display, though a 1920 x 1200p option is also available. Like the Surface, Dell offers a detachable keyboard as an option, but you'll have to pay extra. On the last version of the Venue 10 Pro, the keyboard was a $50 add-on, so we expect this model's price to be about the same.
Both tablets will be powered by an Intel Atom Z8500 Quad Core processor; the 8-inch version will come with either 2 or 4GB of RAM, while the 10-inch model will come standard with 4GB. Similarly with storage, the smaller tablet will be available with either 32 or 64GB of eMMC memory, while the larger slate will have 64 and 128GB options. Both will have microSD card slots capable of accepting cards up to 128GB in size. New to this generation is 802.11a/c Wi-Fi, as well as a USB Type-C connector. A 2-MP camera sits on the front of each tablet, but the 10-incher has an 8-MP rear shooter to the 8-incher's 5MP camera.
Being business-centric tablets, the Venue 8 Pro also comes with an assortment of security features including Trusted Platform Module (TPM) 2, Dell Data Protection/Encryption, and the Dell Client Command Suite, which lets IT departments remotely manage the tablet. Additionally, Dell touts its ProSupport Plus service, which helps anticipate issues that might arise with a device.
Measuring 10.34 x 6.9 x 0.39 inches and weighing 1.46 pounds, the Venue 10 Pro is slightly heavier and thicker than the Microsoft Surface 3. The Venue 8 Pro weighs 0.83 pounds, and measures 8.5 x 5.1 x 0.37 inches.
In our review of the Venue 10 Pro, we found its keyboard and 9.5-hour battery life to be above average, but its performance and touchpad lacking. Still, for less than $500, it was a relative bargain for those looking for the versatility of a tablet and notebook in one device. If Dell resolves some of those issues, the Venue 10 Pro could have even more potential.