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Dell Inspiron Mini 12

Dell Inspiron Mini 12 notebook-not-netbook

The netbook goes big-screen

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Of course, what really separates the Mini 12 from the herd is that screen. At 12.1 inches corner to corner and with a netbook-beating resolution of 1280 x 800, the Mini 12 is a handy choice for anyone not wanting to make do with the usual 8.9in or 10.1in 1024 x 600 netbook-standard screen size and resolution.

Battery Life Results

Dell Inspiron Mini 12 - Battery Life

Battery life in minutes
Longer bars are better

And a nice screen it is too - assuming, like us, you're happy with the glossy finish – being bright, crisp and clear. At the risk of stating the bleedin' obvious, web browsing, word processing and just about any other PC-based function you care to mention really are a fair bit more enjoyable on a 12-incher than they are when you only have ten or nine inches to amuse yourself with.

The Mini 12 comes with a three-cell 24Whr battery rather than the four-cell 32Whr pack fitted to the Mini 9 - though a six-cell 48Whr unit is also available for an extra £40.

The basic battery pack managed to play a standard-definition video at full screen - and full brightness and with the Wi-Fi radio switched on – for 139 minutes which, when compared to the 173 minutes the Mini 9 managed, suggests that Dell would have been better served by using the same four-cell power pack in the 12 that it uses in the 9, the slight increase in weight notwithstanding.

Dell Inspiron Mini 12

As portable as a MacBook Air

Incidentally, rather than the traditional power brick Dell supplies with the Mini 12 with a combined plug/AC adapter which makes for a smaller and lighter combination when you are on the move.

Build a business case: developing custom apps

Next page: Verdict

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