Dell to release $349 Inspiron 11 Windows 8.1 touchscreen laptop

Now that Dell is close to becoming a privately owned company once again, the PC maker is getting ready for the busy fall/holiday shopping season with a relaunch of its Inspiron lineup of consumer laptops. Today, the company showed select members of the press some of their upcoming notebooks, including a very cheap Windows 8.1 touchscreen laptop with long battery life.

PCWorld reports that the laptop is the Dell Inspiron 11, an 11-inch, 3.15 pound notebook with a starting price of $349. For that low price, you will get a processor inside made by AMD, but Dell is also selling a version with Intel's fourth-generation Core (Haswell) processors with prices starting at $379. The Inspiron 11 is supposed to have up to eight hours of battery life and will come pre-installed with a version of Microsoft Office.

Dell will also release a number of new high end Inspiron notebooks, under the 7000 series branding, this fall. They will come in 14-, 15.6- and 17-inch models with prices ranging from $699 to $1,099. All of the Inspiron 7000 notebooks will have Windows 8.1 installed, along with touchscreens and Intel Haswell processors. They will have battery lives of between eight to 11 hours. Specific launch dates for the new Dell laptops were not announced but it's likely they will go on sale the same time Windows 8.1 launches on Oct. 18.

Source: PCWorld | Image via Dell

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23 Comments

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68k said,
Is that an Ethernet port I see? Yay! 1Gbps remote desktop connection possible.

Good work Dell.

Might be a 100mbps though probably a gigabit port. I think a couple Windows 8 cheap touch laptops last year had 100mbps ports. Don't know why, must have saved them 10 cents.

Please don't be loaded with crapware. Please don't be loaded with crapware. Please don't be loaded with crapware.

guru said,
wow pc makers have a brain ....so long chromebook

It may seem good at first but this race to the bottom is what's killing the OEMs to begin with, they're shrinking margins don't help make them much money. The whole netbook thing really screwed over the PC industry in the long term. That's why Intel pushed it's Ultrabook idea so hard and why the prices of those are on the high end.

guru said,
wow pc makers have a brain ....so long chromebook

That is my thought too.. Although it might be too late. Many public schools already committed to long term Chromebook rollouts.

Chromebooks were a gimmick anyways, even the Pixel wasnt expected to do well, which is why the slogan for it is "For what's next"

guru said,
wow pc makers have a brain ....so long chromebook

exactly. you can pay this and get a browser or you can pay this and get a full OS and download chrome for free. seems like the chromebooks are going the way of the Linux netbooks again. sorry google.

GP007 said,

It may seem good at first but this race to the bottom is what's killing the OEMs to begin with, they're shrinking margins don't help make them much money. The whole netbook thing really screwed over the PC industry in the long term. That's why Intel pushed it's Ultrabook idea so hard and why the prices of those are on the high end.

Did netbooks screw them? Seems to me it prepared them a little bit for the arrival of Android tablets and Chromebooks. Fact is that for the average consumer a lightweight and more importantly cheap device does the job. If Microsoft wants to keep their dominant position in the PC market then they and their OEMs need to learn to produce cheaper Windows (tablet-)PCs.

Of course at the same time they can come with new value propositions such as Ultrabooks. But those aren't for anyone. So it's crucial that Microsoft and their OEMs find a way to compete on price and create the better low-end offer. So this is definitely a step in the right direction. You could argue the margins are terrible but then again this isn't about profit alone. It's about perception and staying relevant to consumers. Only when you're relevant do premiums buyers care to buy your products as well.

incendy said,
That is my thought too.. Although it might be too late. Many public schools already committed to long term Chromebook rollouts.
Education is not where Dell makes its money. More importantly I'd love to see a percentage of schools who have committed rather than "many." That market is huge. More importantly, "committed" is a relative term. If it doesn't work well, it won't stick around.

Ronnet said,

Did netbooks screw them? Seems to me it prepared them a little bit for the arrival of Android tablets and Chromebooks. Fact is that for the average consumer a lightweight and more importantly cheap device does the job. If Microsoft wants to keep their dominant position in the PC market then they and their OEMs need to learn to produce cheaper Windows (tablet-)PCs.

Of course at the same time they can come with new value propositions such as Ultrabooks. But those aren't for anyone. So it's crucial that Microsoft and their OEMs find a way to compete on price and create the better low-end offer. So this is definitely a step in the right direction. You could argue the margins are terrible but then again this isn't about profit alone. It's about perception and staying relevant to consumers. Only when you're relevant do premiums buyers care to buy your products as well.

Tablets weren't cheap for a while as well, not till Amazon started it all with the $199 Fire and now that's the new price people expect. It's all about what consumers get used to, $300 netbooks made them used to $300 as the price but it's true that they never got good hardware anyways. Still, now they're expecting cheap regardless, Ultrabooks are nice, and the better systems but I don't know if they sell enough.

I expect the number of OEMs in the PC business to shrink with time if the majority of systems they sell are in the sub $400 price range and if the hardware isn't good then it's just not going to sell anyways, even at a low price. So we'll see, can they bring decent hardware performance with a $300 or $350 price? If so, then fine, otherwise if it's like netbooks then that just pushes people off of it and looking more at the even cheaper tablets.

If those 'even cheaper tablets' do have the hardware performance people are looking for then rightfully so. It goes without saying that the Windows offer should match Android tablets in both quality and price.

MrHumpty said,
Education is not where Dell makes its money. More importantly I'd love to see a percentage of schools who have committed rather than "many." That market is huge. More importantly, "committed" is a relative term. If it doesn't work well, it won't stick around.

As far as public schools go, California is the only one I am familiar with and the two schools I am involved with through family bought Chromebooks for their students this year. For the record, the students were not happy haha.

However, being public schools have no money I don't see this changing in the next 3 to 5 years.

incendy said,
As far as public schools go, California is the only one I am familiar with and the two schools I am involved with through family bought Chromebooks for their students this year. For the record, the students were not happy haha.

However, being public schools have no money I don't see this changing in the next 3 to 5 years.

You're "familiar" with two schools so that qualifies as "many." Ok.

And its the fact that "public schools have no money" that I think the Chromebook purchase was ridiculous. But the other thing Public Schools and most Schools in general for that matter have are administrative folks who make terrible IT decisions with their money.

I feel bad for the kids in those schools. They are being trained to use a unicorn when a horse would have cost the same.

MrHumpty said,
You're "familiar" with two schools so that qualifies as "many." Ok.

And its the fact that "public schools have no money" that I think the Chromebook purchase was ridiculous. But the other thing Public Schools and most Schools in general for that matter have are administrative folks who make terrible IT decisions with their money.

I feel bad for the kids in those schools. They are being trained to use a unicorn when a horse would have cost the same.

Typically public schools do not act alone, they use district wide policies. They do not have individual support etc. They choose a strategy and implement it across the entire district. The support team for their district chooses what they implement tech wise so they can support all the schools. Also if you check the educational conferences you will see there was a drastic switch to chromebooks this year. They are cheap and offer many free services.

I personally do not like them, but for schools with small budgets I can see how they would be very enticing.

They have a tendency to do this, update their whole product range just after all the students have purchased their laptops for college/university.

This caught me out a few years ago with the move to the i Series of processors from the Core 2 Duo line, so I was stuck with a Core 2...