Dell ties up with Spider-Man to launch laptops and Canvas at CES 2017

Alex Kidman 6 January 2017

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At CES 2017, Dell is keenly engaging with content creators, while Spider-Man launches its new laptops.

Standing out in the PC space is a tricky task. Many of the core components that make up a PC are just commodities. It’s not as though a manufacturer can ask Intel for a Core i7 that’s available to only them. Similarly, right now, manufacturers are racing to integrate NVIDIA’s high-end GPUs into their laptops for added graphics grunt. That’s precisely what Dell did earlier in the week, announcing new Inspiron laptops with integrated NVIDIA GPUs.

To demonstrate the Inspiron 15’s gaming prowess, Dell played the celebrity card (remember this is Las Vegas) with star of the upcoming Spider-Man: Homecoming Tom Holland taking to the stage to talk up the new range.

Its Inspiron reworking was just the start of the company’s CES announcements, however, with a strong focus on new machines that court the creative community as well as those that love gaming.

On the basic components front, a whole range of new Inspiron, Latitude and Precision devices will see upgrades to Core i7 Kaby Lake processors as well as NVIDIA and AMD graphics options, USB C and Thunderbolt 3 connectivity. That’s pretty much the march of progress, which you’d expect. Where Dell is differentiating itself markedly is with a renewed push towards creative professionals.

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Dell’s Canvas is effectively a horizontal digital workspace. While TV makers like LG are concentrating on throwing large screens up on your wall, Dell’s Canvas instead presents a 27-inch QHD display that you drop flat on your desk for productivity work, or prop up at an angle depending on your needs.

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Dell had Avid's Louis Hernandez Jr demonstrate a potential workflow for the Canvas, which will work with Microsoft’s upcoming Windows 10 Creator Update across any Windows 10 application. It uses both a stylus pen and selection token for creative work. Dell Australia hasn’t announced pricing but expects the Canvas to go on sale locally by 30 March.

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Dell’s also transforming its popular Dell XPS range, adding a 2-in-1 13-inch model that’s already on sale in Australia with pricing starting at $2,299. As with just about every product Dell produces, the XPS 2-in-1 will vary in price depending on configuration.

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While VR was the buzzword for 2016, this year is when VR has to start making good on its promises, and with that in mind, Dell unveiled its Precision 7720 mobile workstation. It’s what the company calls its first “VR-ready” workstation, with options for either Intel Core i7 or Xeon processors under the hood, as well as NVIDIA Pascal Quadro professional graphics. It will be available in Australia from 28 February with pricing to be determined.

It’s not all laptops, however, with Dell also unveiling a new Precision 27-inch All In One PC laptop. Here Dell’s focus has been more on pumping up the audio quality, with 10 inbuilt speakers co-created with Grammy award winner Jack Joseph Puig. 50W per channel audio should sound pretty sweet coming out of the Precision 27 AIO, which will go on sale 6 April with no word as yet on pricing.

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Dell also announced new monitors to go with its creatives push, including a 32-inch UltraSharp Ultra HD 8K Monitor that goes on sale 23 March. Packing that many pixels into a display of that size means that it clocks in at 280 ppi thanks to 33.2 million pixels spread across its display. It offers full Adobe RGB and sRGB colour gamut, but then you’d expect that for what is very clearly a professional grade monitor. Again pricing wasn’t disclosed. With a nod towards all the HDR hype at CES 2017, Dell also announced a number of models with inbuilt HDR.

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Alex Kidman travelled to Las Vegas for CES 2017 as a guest of Dell.

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