Dell is sprucing up its Latitude lineup of business laptops with its new 7000 series, which will include 12.5-inch and 14-inch Ultrabook models.
Both versions feature Intel's fourth-generation Core (a.k.a. Haswell) processors, run Windows 8 Pro, and come with a gaggle of security options like Dell Data Protection software tools, Dell ControlVault, fingerprint readers, and more. Trying to add a little more sex appeal to the Latitude, Dell has built the 7000 laptops out of aluminum with a powder-coated base and with what it calls a "Tri-metal chassis" for added durability.
The Latitude 12 7000 is 0.79 inches thick and weighs 2.9 pounds. The base configuration includes a 12.5-inch 1,366x768 screen (a higher-res version is forthcoming), Intel Core i3-4010U processor, 4GB and a 128GB solid-state drive. The Latitude 14 7000 is a tiny bit thicker (0.83 inches) and a tad heavier (3.6 pounds) thanks to its 14-inch display (albeit with the same resolution), but it's still sufficiently svelte enough to qualify as an Ultrabook per Intel's specifications. Its base model swaps in a 320GB hard drive for the SSD, but otherwise has similar specs to the Latitude 12 7000.
Dell is hyping the new Latitudes' ability to use WiGig-based wireless dock technology to let you make use of peripherals (monitors, projectors, etc.) without needing any cables. They also support Intel's WiDi technology to wirelessly stream video to an external display. Both the Latitude 12 7000 and 14 7000 include a standard 3-year warranty with limited on-site service.
That support will cost you, however, as the new Latitudes aren't exactly budget systems. The Latitude 14 7000 starts at $1,049, while the Latitude 12 7000 has a starting price of $1,169. Add additional years of support, encryption services, and the like, and the price goes up from there. The Latitude 7000 series begins shipping on August 29, but you can pre-order at Dell's site now.