Dell has announced the availability of its Inspiron Duo, a novel device that uses a rotating screen and a docking station to combine netbook and tablet functions.
Whereas most hybrids have a screen that swivels vertically from the centre of the base unit, the Duo uses twin hinges in the horizontal axis of the screen to turn the device into a laptop or tablet.
The Duo has a 10.1in multi-touch screen powered by a 1.5GHz Intel Atom N550 dual-core CPU and 2GB of DDR3 (800MHz) memory.
It comes with a 250GB 5,400rpm hard drive, with the option of an upgrade to a 320GB 7,200rpm option, plus Windows 7 Home Premium, two USB 2.0 ports and an audio jack.
"Dell is changing the shape of computing with products that usher in new experiences and allow people to stay connected to each other and the content they love from almost anywhere," said Sam Burd, vice president of Dell's consumer, small and medium business product group.
"The new Inspiron Duo's dual purpose delivers one-touch access to great content, yet offers the functionality of a full keyboard for more intensive applications. We're excited to offer such an innovative and unique design to our customers."
Dell showed prototypes of the Inspiron Duo at the Intel Developer Forum in San Francisco in September, touting it as a business device that could be used in the home.
But the company now seems to be aiming the finished product at the home power user, particularly given the low-cost bundling of a docking station.
The Inspiron Duo is available now in the US for $550 (£350) or $650 (£410) with a speaker dock.
The UK version will be available from 2 December for £449 including VAT and delivery, or £499 with the dock. The 320GB version is planned to be on sale by Christmas.
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