Dell Inspiron Mini IM1012-687OBK

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The Dell Inspiron Mini iM1012-6870BK is a retail store configuration and adopts one of the most distinctive designs in the netbook segment, with a display hinge which is set in from the rear of the mini laptop slightly, while the entire chassis gently slopes forward which makes it quite thin in the front. A subtle raised texture was used by Dell for the wrist rest and the keyboard which looks significantly better than the glossy plastic we’ve seen on most netbooks. In addition, thanks to its rounded corners it manages to offer a consumer-friendly look.


The netbook is powered by an Intel Atom N450 processor clocked at 1.60 GHz and comes with 1GB of DDR2 memory running at 800 MHz. Dell fitted this model with a 160GB hard drive spinning at 5,400 rpm, while the graphics power is handled by the integrated Intel GMA 3150. The system is running on Windows 7 Starter and comes with a good keyboard layout, with full size Shift, Tab and other important keys.

As far as the touchpad is concerned, this is quite wide but too short in our opinion. It looks a little bit like those elongated touchpads we’ve seen on netbooks launched by HP. The bottom left and right corners act as mouse buttons which is not as tactile as featuring actual buttons.

It has a standard 10.1-inch display with a native resolution of 1,024 x 600 pixels, the same resolution you’ll find on most low-end netbooks, while the more expensive ones have become available with a 1,366 x 768-pixel resolution display which offer more screen real estate and are suitable for watching 720p content.


Regarding connectivity, the Inspiron Mini iM1012-6870BK has VGA out for connecting it to an external display, along with headphone + microphone jacks. It packs three USB 2.0 ports and an SD card reader, while for networking it has the usual 802.11b/g Wi-Fi and an Ethernet port.

The hardware configuration of this netbook makes it suitable only for single-task use, like web surfing, writing documents or light multimedia playback. One thing that you will certainly appreciate about this model would have to be its great battery life, managing to last for almost 7 hours during a video playback test, using the standard 6-cell lithium-ion battery. This means that in normal conditions you can get up to 8 hours of use.