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CES 2011: Dell Announces a Slew of New Gadgets

by Jack McGrath | January 6, 2011January 6, 2011 6:11 pm PDT

Though the hype surrounding Dell’s Press Event held earlier today was not particularly large, the consumer electronics manufacturer certainly made a splash by announcing a slew of new devices that will help the company compete with the best of ’em in three distinct niches – mobile technology, gaming, and entertainment. According to Dell’s blog, the company executives noticed these three trends and an outcry from their audience to create intuitive, sleek products. Has Dell turned over a new leaf by actually listening to its customers? Let’s take a look at the gizmos announced today and find out.

Dell Venue Smartphone

– Dynamic 4.1-inch AMOLED screen with Gorilla Glass
– 8-megapixel camera
– Runs Android 2.2 and full Flash 10.1 implementation (see my comments above on this topic)
– Offers the full Dell Stage experience with Stage widgets
– Features a slick curved design and fits easily in your pocket
– Pricing and availability: details in the coming weeks

Dell is certainly diving head-first into the mobile market, creating a device that rivals many Android-powered devices out there. Boasting a 4.1-inch AMOLED screen, the device will obviously be graphically impressive. However, will Dell’s choice to run on Froyo hurt its chances of success? Most likely, considering the fact that equally impressive smartphones will be running on Gingerbread. While the company might be able to push out a software update, I would seriously doubt it coming anytime soon, as it is attempting to ensure that all of its touchscreen devices maintain the same interactive experience for users. Do you think that the Venue can survive in the extremely competitive Android market?

Dell Streak 7

– Utilizes the dual core 1GHz NVIDIA Tegra T2 processor for great performance across a wide variety of entertainment tasks
– Beyond support for T-Mobile’s 4G network, it supports up to 802.11n Wi-Fi
– Dual cameras: 5 megapixel rear camera and 1.3 megapixel front-facing camera offers sharp video calling via the Qik Video Chat software over Wi-Fi or T-Mobile’s 3G and 4G networks
– Runs Android 2.2 and full Flash 10.1 implementation
– Live news, sports and entertainment television via T-Mobile TV
– Offers the full Dell Stage experience with Stage widgets
– Pricing and availability: Expected to become available through T-Mobile retail stores, T-Mobile.com and through Dell in the coming weeks

Streak7H_ImageIt appears as if Dell’s flagship slate for 2011 has some impressive technical specifications, though there are some shortcomings on the Streak 7. First off, the device is running Android 2.2 as opposed to the tablet-target Honeycomb (Android 3.0) that provides a generally more pleasing environment for users. This is a major disappointment that will immediately date the device once the Motorola XOOM hits the market. The only reason that Dell might do this to consumers is to ensure continuity between devices. However, this ailment is remedied with the dual core processor the tablet houses, not to mention the front and rear facing cameras. What do you think? Will the Streak 7 flounder or flourish in the newly saturated tablet market?

XPS 17 Laptop

– CPU i3/i5/i7 Sandy Bridge Dual core and Quad core
– The i7 version now supports Optimus, unless configured with the optional 3D FHD panel – this uses the discrete GPU full time
– Wide FHD WLED display (1920 x 1080 resolution) option
– Configurable with the latest NVIDIA 500 series mobile graphics
– The i7 Quad core supports Wi-Di  and can stream up to 1080P
– The XPS 17 supports the full Stage experience on all panels
– Now features the popular chiclet keyboard
– All the other great enhancements the XPS line offers, like A Skype HD certified webcam, JBL speakers and Waves Maxx audio
– Pricing and availability: starts at $1,449 available on February 1, 2011 (that date will vary by region)

Alienware M17 x rev 3

– Features the next-generation i5 and i7 quad core Sandy Bridge processors
– Intel P67 Express chipset
– HDMI-in capability (great for connecting a Blu-ray player, Xbox 360 or PS3)
– Wireless HD capability means uncompressed true HD
– Graphics option: 1.5GB NVIDIA GTX 460M
– Graphics option: ATI 1GB HD6870M 2GB 6970M
– Wide FHD WLED 120Hz display (1920 x 1080 resolution)
– Pricing and availability: starts at $1,499 available on January 10, 2011 (that date will vary by region)

New Alienware Aurora desktop

– Features the next-generation i5 and i7 quad core Sandy Bridge processors
– Intel P67 Express chipset
– Features overclocked liquid-cooled CPUs
– Support for over 400W of dedicated graphics power
– Dual graphics support either AMD Crossfire X or NVIDIA SLI modes
– Two finishes: Matte Black and Dark Chrome which is actually electroplated chrome
– Pricing and availability: starts at $1,799 available on January 10, 2011 (that date will vary by region)

There definitely seems to be a trend in terms of Dell’s computer strategy – providing users with better graphics will equate to a generally better gaming experience. That is most definitely prevalent, considering the fact that the majority of the updates enhance their Alienware brand, which is generally associated with PC gaming. One of the devices has HDMI-in capability, meaning that console gamers are not left out on the graphical goodness here. What do you think? Will Dell’s shift towards graphics-centered computing help the brand in the long run?

Dell also teased the Streak 10, literally showing it for about 10 seconds before taking it away from the audience. It presumably has a 10-inch touchscreen and is expected to launch next year.

Did Dell have a successful day at CES? Will you be looking to purchase any of the announced devices? Let us know in the comments below.

[Source: Direct2Dell]


Jack McGrath

Rooted in his childhood obsession with dismantling and reassembling gizmos and gadgets around the house, Jack McGrath's knowledge of programming,...

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