We're no strangers to the Dell XPS 13, having reviewed several generations of Dell's attractive Ultrabook. The looks and design haven't changed over the years, but the internals and display get an upgrade with each refresh. The last time we reviewed the XPS 13 it received a full HD display upgrade. This time it's a full HD IPS touch screen clad in Gorilla Glass and new Intel Haswell fourth generation CPUs with HD 4400 graphics. The wireless moves up to dual band Intel 7260AC wireless with Bluetooth 4.0, and Dell uses Synaptics' very good glass trackpad.
The battery is a bit larger and runtimes are significantly increased thanks to the power efficient Haswell platform. The XPS 13 hasn't gotten much cooler or quieter though, and the fan is still robust when the system is working hard-- it's not crazy loud or desperate sounding the like the Sony Vaio Flip 13 though. Since the bottom is carbon fiber, when it heats up it doesn't feel burning hot like metal would. The top is clad in a single piece of aluminum, and this is an attractive and strong 3 lb. laptop.
The backlit keyboard remains one of our favorites, right up there with Lenovo ThinkPad keyboards for tactile feel, concave keys and even backlighting. The keyboard backlight does whine a little, and those with sensitivity to high-pitched sounds may notice and be bothered by it. The coil whine isn't very loud and it hasn't bothered me, but your ears may say otherwise.