The Dell XPS 13 had a spot on our list of the best laptops available for years. Last year, it lost its spot because the design and features were at a standstill and Dell didn’t bother to update its processors. However, its variant, the XPS 13 Plus, did get updated in 2023, and now we know why.
Dell has taken the XPS 13 Plus’ modern, minimalistic design and spread it to the rest of the XPS lineup. Gone are the XPS 15 and 17, replaced by the new XPS 14 and XPS 16. The XPS 13 Plus is now just the XPS 13. XPS is the company’s premium PC line, and these new models are predictably expensive: prices for the XPS 13 start at $1,300 (about £1,025 or AU$1,930 converted), the XPS 14 at $1,700 and the 16 at $1,900.
The new sizes are streamlined with tone-on-tone machined aluminum bodies (made from recycled materials, naturally), ultrathin bezels around the displays, a touch function key row that lights up when you want it and goes dark when you don’t and a seamless glass touchpad with haptic feedback. They all look fantastic, though we found the haptics worked inconsistently on previous versions, so here’s hoping things have improved now that the design is spread across the entire line.
For the XPS 13 Plus, Dell developed a true edge-to-edge keyboard that did away with the lattice separating the keys. That keyboard design is now on all the XPS models, although there are speaker openings at the sides on the 14- and 16-inch sizes. You might think the nearly non-existent spacing between the keys would lead to mispresses, but the keycaps are actually wider so it’s really not an issue. The capacitive touch function row above the keyboard looks nice and can easily be switched between media hotkeys and function keys.
The new XPS line will use Intel’s Core Ultra processors with a processor, integrated graphics and a neural processor, or NPU. The NPU will help accelerate AI tasks, but perhaps more importantly, it will extend battery life by taking some load off the more power hungry CPU and GPU. Dell also added a Microsoft Copilot key at the lower right of the keyboard for fast access to the AI assistant.
The XPS 13 will be available with Intel Arc graphics, which promise to be better than we’re used to seeing from integrated graphics. Still, if you have hopes of video or photo editing, design or basic STEM work or even a little gaming, the XPS 14 will have the option for Nvidia GeForce RTX 4050 discrete graphics; the XPS 16 will go up to an RTX 4070.
To go along with all that power, Dell will offer multiple display types on all the XPS models including FHD- or QHD-resolution LCDs with a variable refresh rate from 30Hz to 120Hz — the former helps save battery life, the latter smooths out fast motion — and a 3K OLED. And Dell finally swapped out its 720p webcam above the display for a 1080p one.
The new XPS 13, 14 and 16 are expected to be available soon, but no exact release date was announced.