News Tech: AppleInsider is funded by its audience and may make money from qualifying sales as an Amazon Associate and affiliate partner. These affiliate relationships have no impact on the editorial material we provide. A portable powerhouse of a laptop, Apple’s new MacBook Air and Dell’s XPS 13 Plus are targeted at the same market. Here is how the two laptops compare side by side in our hands.
The M2 MacBook Air, packing Apple’s latest Apple Silicon chip and overhauled with various new features, is arguably one of the best value notebooks you can buy. Combining a slim profile with performance, it is an attractive combination. Naturally, this is territory that many notebook producers also try to occupy with their products. In the case of Dell, its XPS 13 Plus is a notebook that directly competes against the MacBook Air.
While the MacBook Air has moved away from a taper to a more uniform thickness, Dell tries to fake a taper with its own enclosure. The sides start out thicker at the rear, with the edge narrowing towards the front to give the appearance of a taper, but really it is decoration for the edge. The two are very similarly sized, with the MacBook Air having a footprint of 11.97 inches by 8.46 inches, while the Dell is smaller at 11.63 inches by 7.84 inches. Though Dell wins with a smaller footprint, it does lose out on thickness at 0.6 inches to the MacBook Air’s 0.44 inches.
Dell uses Intel Iris Xe Graphics, which refers to the integrated graphics built into Intel’s chips. It scored a 13743 on the OpenCL Geekbench 5 graphics test. Apple is known for having a rather minimalist approach when it comes to ports on devices. It started to shift away from that viewpoint with the 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro releases, and it somewhat continued with the MacBook Air.
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