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Dell XPS 13 9370 vs Surface Laptop: Which should you buy?

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Dell XPS 13 9370


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Surface Laptop


The XPS 13 is generally the best all-rounder. The battery life and port selection in particular, are worth highlighting.

$899 from Dell

Pros

  • Touch and non-touch display options.
  • Quad-core processors.
  • Optional 4K display.
  • Great battery life.
  • Thunderbolt 3 USB-C.

Cons

  • No digital pen support.
  • UHD 620 graphics less capable than Surface Book.

In most areas, the XPS 13 overshadows it. However, the Surface Laptop is the choice for folks who want to use a pen, or are true Microsoft diehards.

$799 from Microsoft

Pros

  • Touch display on every model.
  • Digital pen and Surface Dial support.
  • Superior graphics performance on the Core i7 model to the XPS 13.

Cons

  • Alcantara gets dirty easily.
  • Likely due for a refresh soon.
  • No USB-C or Thunderbolt 3.

The Surface Laptop is an excellent machine, with a gorgeous display and support for a digital pen. However, in most areas, the XPS 13 is the better choice, with a wider selection of ports, and better battery life. Microsoft diehards will adore the Surface Laptop, though, and as a refreshed model is likely coming soon, the prices are now lower than ever.

XPS 13 vs. Surface Laptop tech specs

Category Dell XPS 13 Surface Laptop
OS Windows 10 Home
Windows 10 Pro
Windows 10 S (upgradeable to Pro)
Processor Intel 8th Gen Core i5-8250U
Intel 8th Gen Core i7-8550U
Seventh-gen Intel Core i5-7200U, i7-7660U
Display size 13.3 inches 13.5 inches
Display resolution UltraSharp 4K (3840×2160), 100 percent color gamut
FHD (1920 x 1080) touch display, 72 percent color gamut
FHD (1920 x 1080) non-touch display, 72 percent color gamut
2,256 x 1,504 touch (3:2 aspect ratio)
RAM 4GB/8GB/16GB DDR3 4GB/8GB/16GB DDR3
Graphics Intel UHD 620 (Eighth-gen) Intel HD 620 (i5)
Intel Iris Plus 640 (i7)
Storage 128GB/256GB/512GB/1TB SSD 128GB/256GB/512GB/1TB SSD
Ports Two Thunderbolt 3 with PowerShare
One USB-C 3.1 with PowerShare
microSD card reader
headset jack
USB-A 3.0
Surface Connect
Mini DisplayPort
3.5mm jack
Battery 52WHr 45.2 WHr
Dimensions 7.8 mm to 11.6 mm x 302 mm x 199 mm 308mm x 223mm x 14.5mm
Weight Starting weight: 2.67 lbs (1.21 kg) for non-touch
Starting at 2.68 lbs (1.21 kg) for touch
2.76 lbs (1.25kg)

Close but the XPS 13 has it

The Surface Laptop is due for a refresh, with its specs very much reflecting 2017 across the board. The XPS 13, on the other hand, benefits from the latest 8th generation Intel quad-core processors, providing twice the cores and threads you get on a Surface Laptop for much better multitasking and intensive performance. You’ll also find better battery life in the XPS 13 and Thunderbolt 3 USB-C, which you do not get on the Surface Laptop.

The graphics performance on the Surface Laptop is superior on the Core i7 model, leaving it suitable for even some moderate gaming like Fortnite. But with only two cores, the XPS 13 is easily more powerful for intensive processes like video editing.

The Thunderbolt 3 support on the XPS 13 is a big deal, too. Not only does it mean the new USB-C standard connector is available, but you can hook up things like external high-resolution displays, docks, and even eGPUs to turn your laptop into a powerful desktop gaming PC or workstation.

And you can’t forget the Alcantara-covered keyboard on the Surface Laptop. Alcantara is an Italian-made fabric that looks and feels a lot like suede and has been used on a number of Microsoft products. Fabric gets dirty easily, that’s just fact, which means if you decide on the Surface, you’re going to have to deal with a mess after a few weeks.

The XPS 13 is tough to top

Both are incredible laptops in their own right, but the XPS 13 has more features that are more important to more people. Thunderbolt 3 and USB-C are both standards, unlike the Surface Connect, the quad-core processor is plenty powerful and you still get things like a gorgeous display, design and top notch build quality.

It also doesn’t get dirty as easily!

Our pick


Dell XPS 13 9370

One of the best laptops money can buy.

It doesn’t take long to see why the XPS 13 is incredibly popular, and the latest model pushes the boundaries even further. Quad-core processors join Thunderbolt 3 and 4K displays in one of the essential Ultrabooks.

Priced well, but still best for the fans

Microsoft fans will love the Surface Laptop with its amazing design and build quality, gorgeous display and maybe even the unique alcantara keyboard.

But, it’s getting a little long in the tooth now compared to more recent laptops, like the latest version of the XPS 13. It’s likely being refreshed soon, but until then, it’s priced well at least.

For Microsoft fans


Surface Laptop

Well priced right now but overshadowed.

Even with the recent price cuts, it’s still tough to recommend the Surface Laptop over the Dell to anyone but Microsoft diehards and folks looking for pen support.







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