The Dell XPS 13, our favorite overall laptop, is getting a major processor upgrade. At the IFA tech conference in Berlin, Dell announced that the laptop will get an update to Intel 8th-Gen processors. The revamped XPS 13 will be available on September 12.
Dell suggests that by pairing the new quad-core 8th-Gen CPUs with the Dynamic Power Mode it first used on the XPS 13 2-in-1, it can achieve up to a 44-percent improvement over last year’s model with a 7th-Gen processor.
That’s all without a hit to the battery life. Dell is claiming up to 22 hours of charge on a model with a 1080p display. The laptop will be sold with up to 4K screens, which could potentially affect the battery life.
While Dell says the new XPS 13 starts at $799, that’s a bit tricky, as it will continue to offer the laptop with 7th-Gen processors. That price is likely reserved for the less powerful Core i3-7100U CPU. The 8th-Gen Intel Core i5-8250U and i7-8550U are likely to be the most expensive options. Dell says the new lineup should mostly match up price-wise with last year's offerings.
We don’t understand why or for how long Dell is still relying on last generation chips, though it may be partially because Intel hasn’t introduced U-series Core i3 CPUs yet.
Additionally, while the 8th Gen Core i7 will be available in September, a Dell representative told me that the 8th Gen Core i5 won’t be available until October, while the rest of the chips will remain in their 7th Gen iterations.
Here’s the new CPU lineup:
- 7th Generation Intel Core i3-7100U processor (3M Cache, up to 2.4 GHz)
- 7th Generation Intel Core i5-7200U processor (3M Cache, up to 3.1 GHz)
- 7th Generation Intel Core i7-7560U processor (4M Cache, up to 3.8 GHz)
- 7th Generation Intel Core i5-7300U processor (3M Cache, up to 3.5 GHz), vPro
- 7th Generation Intel Core i7-7660U processor (4M Cache, up to 4.0 GHz), vPro
- 8th Generation Intel Core i5 8250U processor (6M Cache, up to 3.4 GHz)
- 8th Generation Intel Core i7 8550U processor (8M Cache, up to 4.0 GHz)
Otherwise, it doesn’t appear that Dell hasn’t made any major changes to its flagship 13-incher. It looks the same, including the rose gold and silver colors. We’ll test the XPS 13 with 8th Gen CPUs (especially that 44 percent performance increase claim) when it hits our labs, but if you were worried about buying because of major new features or aesthetic changes, you’re not missing much.