Dell XPS 15 vs. Microsoft Surface Book; battle between the two best Windows 10 laptops

Both laptops are powered by 6th generation Intel processors
By @s_rituparna on
Microsoft Surface Book and Dell XPS 15
Microsoft Surface Book and Dell XPS 15

The month of November will see the release of another smart and powerful laptop, the Dell XPS 15, triggering competition with the newly launched Microsoft Surface Book to new heights. Before that, the Microsoft Store began taking pre-orders for the new Dell XPS 15 starting at US$1,699. The new device will hit the stores on Nov. 2.


The successor of last year’s popular Dell XPS 13 has a 15.4-inch 4K Ultra HD screen with a resolution of 3840 x 2160 pixels. With excellent viewing angles, colour pops and contrast ratio of 1000:1, the edge-to-edge display of the XPS 15 seems to be fascinating according to The Verge.

On the other hand, the Surface Book has a 13.5-inch PixelSense Display with a resolution of 3000 x 2000 pixels (267 pixels per inch) and contrast ratio of 1800:1. But the versatile laptop touts a stylish hinge that allows the user to adjust and position the display according to his convenience. The display can be detached from the keyboard by the push of a button. It uses the Muscle Wire to hold its screen in place.

Surface Book is very light and weighs only 3.4 pounds whereas the bigger Dell XPS 15 with non-touch display starts at 3.9 pounds and touch displays starts from 4.4 pounds.

Price, Processor and Storage Options

Both devices almost strike a balance in this regard. The Surface Book, however, comes with a wider range of storage options. The Dell XPS 15 will initially be available in two variants. One has an Intel Core i5 processor, 256 GB of memory and 8 GB of RAM and costs US$1,699 (AU$2,388).

The other model sports an Intel Core i7 processor, 512 GB of memory and 16 GB of RAM and comes with a little higher price tag of US$2,099 (AU$2,950). Graphics on the Dell XPS 15 is handled by the newer Intel HD Graphics 530 coupled with NVIDIA GeForce GTX960X with 2GB of memory.

In the meantime, Microsoft has five models of Surface Book with up to 1 TB of internal storage. With either an Intel Core i5 or Core i7 on board, there are variants of the Surface Book with 128 GB, 256 GB, 512 GB or 1TB of internal storage with 8 GB or 16 GB of RAM.

Prices start at US$1,949 (AU$2,740) for the model which features 128 GB/8 GB RAM and Intel Core i5 processor.

Windows Hello and Surface Pen

This is the domain in which the Surface Book will clearly steal the show over the Dell XPS 15. The Surface Book is compatible with Windows Hello facial authentication feature. It comes with a 5 MP front camera and also houses an 8 MP rear camera unit.

Unfortunately, the latest offering from Dell isn’t compatible will Windows Hello and doesn’t feature a rear camera. Moreover, the Surface Book will be shipped with a stylus, the Surface Pen, which can sense 1,024 levels pressure sensitivity


As for physical connectivity, the Surface Book comes with two USB 3.0 ports, an SD card reader, Surface Connect, a headset jack and a Mini DisplayPort. On the other hand, the latest Dell XPS 15 will house two USB 3.0 ports, an HDMI port, a full-size SD card reader, a Kensington Lock slot and Thunderbolt 3.

Battery Life

This is one aspect that matters most. According to Windows Central, the Dell XPS 15 model with full HD display and Core i7 keep the lights on for a commendable 17 hours. The 4K UHD variants commands 10 hours of battery life. In this regard, Microsoft claims the Surface Book can keep going for up to 12 hours with normal usage.


Although the Dell XPS 15 comes with a larger edge-to-edge display screen, the Surface Book wins in design with its super stylish hinge and Surface Pen. Both laptops are powered by 6th generation Intel processors; run the latest Windows 10 Pro OS and have almost similar battery lives.

The Surface Book, however, provides more storage options. But, the premium price of the Surface Book may divert few users to opt for the Dell XPS 15 instead.

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