XPS 13 and MacBook Air, two of the greatest 13-inch laptops on the market, have undergone major redesigns in their most recent editions. The XPS 13 9315 is now an all-aluminum laptop with Intel’s 12th-generation CPUs, making it smaller and lighter than ever before. Apple’s latest CPU, the M2, is added to the MacBook Air, but the classic tapered shape is gone, making it one of the thinnest laptops on the market. Our review process for these two new machines has not yet begun, so this comparison is based only on their specifications. One design, on the other hand, appears to be the most promising thus far.
This laptop’s design has been refined over several years, culminating in a laptop that we think the best you can buy. Incorporating CNC-machined aluminium and carbon or glass fibre into a sleek aesthetic, it became the XPS 15 and XPS 17’s signature look. The new XPS 13 abandons a large portion of that philosophy. The laptop’s fibre keyboard deck has been replaced by an all-aluminum chassis, which substantially simplifies the design. After a while, even the fiber’s warmth fades. Sky and Umber are the only colours available. Dell plainly does not want the XPS 13 to stagnate, despite the fact that the update is disputed whether or not it is an enhancement.
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Despite its metal construction, the MacBook Air M2 loses its most recognisable design feature. As a result, it looks more like the MacBook Pro. It’s also one of the thinnest laptops ever produced, measuring just 0.44 inches thick. Space Gray, silver, Starlight, and Midnight are the four hues available. In comparison to the XPS 13, the MacBook Air M2 has lower bezels, although not as tiny as the XPS 13, and it also features the infamous notch on top, which houses the webcam. Both laptops are expected to be among the most well-built on the market. The XPS 13 and MacBook Air M1 were both rock-solid, and there’s no reason to believe that the new ones will be any less reliable.
One of the nicest versions of Windows 11 available now would be XPS 13 if its keyboard remains unchanged. The keycaps are large and the key spacing is generous, making it easy to type with a light touch. Microsoft Precision touchpad drivers and Windows 11 multi-touch gesture support should ensure a smooth surface and confident clicks on the touchpad. But Apple’s Magic Keyboard, which has even more precise switches and a bottoming action that’s springy and responsive, is the best you can get on any laptop at the moment. For long typing sessions, its keycaps are suitably proportioned and its key spacing is more than adequate. In addition, the Force Touch haptic touchpad on the MacBook Air M2 is larger and more precise.
Full HD webcams are available on the MacBook Air M2 as well as on the XPS 13, which has only a 720p camera. While the XPS 13 has both a fingerprint reader and an infrared camera for facial recognition, Apple’s Touch ID is used for passwordless login. Both laptops have two USB-C ports with Thunderbolt 4 capability, thus connectivity is nearly identical. The most important distinction is that the MacBook Air M2 still has a 3.5mm audio connector, whereas the XPS 13, sadly, does not. Disappointment and a leg up for Apple. Wi-Fi 6E and Bluetooth 5.2 on the XPS 13 are more current than Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5.0 on the XPS 12.
The Core i5-1230U and Core i7-1250U processors in the XPS 13 are from Intel’s 12th generation. Two Performance and eight Efficient cores (the Core i5 and the Core i7 have a maximum Turbo frequency of 4.40GHz and 4.70GHz, respectively). Compared to the previous generation, which employed 28-watt Intel 11th-generation processors, this represents a loss in performance, but with increased efficiency. Even after a thorough evaluation of the new model, it is impossible to say for sure.
According to Apple, the eight-core CPU and up to a 10-core GPU M2 in the MacBook Air M2 are up to 18% faster than the M1’s CPU and up to 35% faster than the M1’s GPU, respectively. A low-power Intel processor is expected to further speed up the MacBook Air M2, which is already faster than the XPS 13’s previous version. No doubt that the MacBook Air M2 will outperform the new XPS 13 when it comes to speed. There is only one lingering question: how much? Because it has no fans, the MacBook Air M2 remains absolutely silent even while running at full capacity. However, the XPS 13 does not make the same claim.
Full HD+ (1920 x 1200) and UHD+ (3840 x 2400) IPS displays are available for the XPS 13. According to my experience, these displays will fall somewhere between ordinary and above average, making them neither fantastic for creative work nor adequate for the majority of work.
An OLED screen option has been removed, which is a huge disappointment and removes a superior display from the equation. 13.6-inch 16:10 Liquid Retina display with up to 500 nits of brightness and wide colour gamut is the new MacBook Air M2’s display. It’s very likely that it will have a better screen than either of the XPS 13 models. In order to make a decision, we’ll have to study both devices first.
While the MacBook Air M2 is marginally thinner, and more than half an inch shallower, the XPS 13 is slightly narrower. Additionally, it’s lighter, weighing in at 2.59 pounds as opposed to 2.7 pounds, but its thickness, at 0.55 inches as opposed to 0.44 inches, isn’t quite as improbable. There isn’t much of a difference between the two computers because they’re both small enough to fit in a bag without being seen.
Although we don’t have specific battery life figures for either laptop, we’re confident that the MacBook Air M2 will outlive the XPS 13. Apple’s laptop might easily outperform Dell’s, and it wouldn’t be out of the question for it to do so. Because of this, the MacBook Air M2 is a more portable machine, and it may be able to endure two full workdays on one charge. The MacBook Air M2 appears to be the clear winner in our comparison test, at least on paper.
In addition to 8GB of LPDDR5 RAM, 512GB of PCIe 4.0 SSD, and a 13.4-inch FHD+ display, the XPS 13 costs $979. There’s no mention of the UHD+ display on Dell’s website at the moment, so the most expensive XPS 13 currently available is $1,469 with a Core i7-1250U, 32GB of LPDDR5 RAM, a 1TB PCIe 4.0 SSD, and a Full HD+ screen.
It costs $1,199 to get an eight-core CPU, eight-core GPU, 8GB of RAM, a 256GB SSD, and the 13.6-inch display on the MacBook Air M2. With an eight-core CPU and 10-core GPU and 24GB of RAM, you can have a $2,499 laptop with a 13.6-inch display. Because of this, the MacBook Air M2 is more expensive than the previous model. If we don’t put them through our review process, it’s difficult to say which laptop wins. For those who don’t need Windows 11 and don’t mind spending a little more money, the MacBook Air M2 appears to be the better laptop option.