• Survey reveals new technology trends, student and parent device preferences and technology purchasing habits

Parents and students choose performance as the most important feature for their laptop, tablet or 2-in-1, although they disagree on who is the technology decision-maker, according to a survey by career, internship expert and best-selling author Lauren Berger, "The Intern Queen," in partnership with Dell. 

Dell Inspiron 11

The annual survey of more than 600 students and nearly 100 parents reveals insights into their technology purchasing habits, device preferences, usage models, career planning and emerging technology trends. The survey also illustrates a number of top findings that will help students and parents better understand each other as they plan for back-to-school, including:

  • Laptops are the preferred "pen and paper" of today. Both parents and students chose the laptop as the primary device for school use, with almost half of parents and 61 percent of students agreeing that the PC is where work gets done. According to the research, the primary use of laptops for students is communicating with friends (47 percent) and doing homework or research (32 percent). For students who want the best of both worlds without sacrificing performance, the 2-in-1 combines the powerful performance of a laptop with the versatility of a tablet to help students take notes in class with ease or chat online with friends.
  • Who’s in charge? It’s debatable. When it comes to choosing technology for back to school, 61 percent of parents say they are the deciding factor, while 63 percent of students say they are the decision maker. The question becomes, "who is really in charge of the buying at home?"
  • Budget and buying time has changed. The majority of parents surveyed (37 percent) plan to spend between $200-500 on their child’s technology for back-to-school. Both students and parents say they typically refresh their technology every two years or when the technology is out-of-date and needs to be replaced. Both say they look to family and friends (48 percent and 41 percent, respectively) and technology blogs (36 percent and 40 percent) for technology recommendations and reviews.
  • Performance is king…by a lot. Almost half of parents (47 percent) and students (49 percent) surveyed indicate that performance is the most important feature when choosing a laptop or tablet. The next most important features for students – mobility/portability (16 percent), battery life (14 percent), and overall design (12 percent) – surprisingly trailed well-behind performance.
  • Fun fact: Morgan Freeman’s voice reigns supreme. Almost half of students (43 percent) chose Morgan Freeman as their choice if they could pick a celebrity voice for their intelligent device. Other top celebrities included Robert Downey, Jr. and Anna Kendrick.
  • It’s never too early intern. Think internships are just for college? No more! 28 percent of students surveyed start thinking about filling up their resumes with real-world experience as early as their senior year in high school. This was not the case just five years ago, and "The Intern Queen" is seeing more first-year college students landing internships.

New Back-to-School Products

With these survey results in mind, "the Intern Queen" and Dell collaborated to recommend the best back-to-school products that both parents and students can agree on, no matter who thinks they have the final say in the product purchase. These products are designed to help students do what they love inside and outside of the classroom, whether that is creating fun videos with friends or working on their latest science experiment. With Dell’s line-up, pre-loaded with Windows 10, students don’t have to sacrifice on mobility, design or battery life to get the performance they crave.

  • Inspiron 15 7000 Series 2-in-1 - Consumers who crave thin designs with upscale style and options will love the Inspiron 15 7000 Series 2-in-1, which combines the beauty and strength of forged aluminum and impressive battery life to provide a truly versatile device. Using the 360-degree hinge design you can switch between four different modes. It is great for multi-user households where the device is shared by different people with different needs from students doing homework to family movie time. Starting price: $549.00
  • Inspiron 13 7000 Series 2-in-1 – This system combines the powerful performance of a laptop and versatility of a 13.3" tablet. Students will be able to switch between laptop, tablet, tent, or stand mode to write that research paper, take notes, edit photos or stream their favorite shows. Starting price: $529.99
  • Inspiron 11 3000 Series 2-in-1 – The versatile device has the performance of a laptop and the convenience of a tablet in one and at a great price. Its 360-degree hinge design lets you flip the keyboard around and lay it flat to surf social media or pull up a playlist. Thin and light, this computer is perfect for carrying in a backpack while on the go. Starting price: $349.99
  • XPS 13 - According to the Back to School survey, the laptop reigns supreme; and turns out, it’s an award winner too! A CES Innovation Awards 2015 Honoree and winner of multiple ‘best of show’ awards, the XPS 13 is the smallest 13-inch laptop in the world¹ enabled by the world’s first virtually bordeless InfinityEdge display. With up to 15 hours² of battery life, it helps students to work all day without charging. Starting price: $799.99
  • Venue 8 7000 Series Dell’s thinnest tablet at only 6mm, it is easily portable so students can take it from the dorm to class to their internship with ease. It’s the first tablet to offer the Intel® RealSense™ Snapshot Depth Camera, a depth-mapping device that enables users to capture and measure dimensions in photos without ever picking up a ruler. Starting price: $349.00

Students and parents alike can protect their back-to-school investments with Dell Premium Support, Dell’s newest service for consumer PCs and tablets that gives customers proactive automated support for both hardware and software³. Available in the United States and Canada, Dell is the first and only company to combine proactive automated support with 24x7 access to expert technicians, onsite service after remote diagnosis⁴ and support for both hardware and software issues.

To learn more about how some of today’s students are using technology to bring their passions to life, visit Dell.com/backtoschool. The 2015 look book features "The New Experts," a group of hand-picked thinkers, doers, creators and makers that are using Dell devices to take learning and sharing to a whole new level. Join the "The New Experts" conversations on Twitter, Instagram and YouTube using #learnitshareit: Jennxpenn (Content Creator), Isabella Rose Taylor (Designer), Taylor Wilson (Physicist), Jack & Jack (Musicians) and Lilly Singh (Comedian).

"Today, teens are using technology, both inside and outside of the classroom, to become experts and redefine themselves," said Marissa Tarleton, executive director, Consumer and Small Business Marketing, Dell. "This year, Dell is offering some of our best products yet, packed with the power of Windows 10, to get students excited about back-to-school and help them to create, learn and share more than they ever thought possible with their laptop or tablet."

Windows 10 Ready

Select Dell devices with the newest Windows 10 operating system are available now through pre-sale. To ensure you get your new Windows 10 device first, purchase now and Dell will start shipping your system on July 28 with free next-business-day shipping. Additional Windows 10 configuration options will be available on Dell.com, as well as from leading retailers such as Best Buy on July 29.

Windows 10 features customer-driven design enhancements including:

  • Enhanced Touch-Screen Experience: Dell collaborated with Microsoft to maximize the touch-enabled functionality of their devices and enhance the front of screen experience.
  • Facial Recognition Sign-on: Dell is an early adopter of Intel’s RealSense 3D cameras allowing users to take advantage of Windows Hello, a new feature in Windows 10 that provides instant access to your devices through biometric authentication – using your face, iris or fingerprint to unlock your devices – with technology that is much safer than traditional passwords.
  • Cutting Edge Audio: Waves MaxxAudio offers superior audio features, including improved performance for media playback, voice communications and automatic speech recognition; folding Cortana into the experience will be done seamlessly.
  • Support Services: Innovative service and support options help customers get up and running on Win 10 faster and keep their systems healthy. The proactive, automated Dell Premium Support for consumers and the proactive and predictive ProSupport Plus for PCs and Tablets for commercial customers offer OS help for Windows 10 and 24x7 online and phone priority access to expert technicians.

Preparing Educators for Back-to-School

Dell recently announced the new Dell Teaching and Learning Academy for educators across the country to ensure classroom technologies live up to the promise of fostering collaborative and creative learning environments for all students. As part of the Academy, educators can access a catalog of virtual professional learning courses, which cover topics from basic introduction to Windows or Chrome operating systems, next-generation assessments, game-based learning to personalized and blended curriculum development. 

About Dell

Dell Inc. listens to customers and delivers innovative technology and services that give them the power to do more. For more information, visit www.dell.com.

About Dell World

Join us Oct. 20-22 at Dell World 2015, Dell’s flagship event bringing together technology and business professionals to network, share ideas and help co-create a better future. 

1Based on June 2015 Principled Technologies Report sponsored by Dell, "Comparison of 13 Inch Class Notebooks." For more information, see http://www.principledtechnologies.com/Dell/XPS_13_comparison_0715.pdf

²Tested system equipped with 4GB memory, Intel HD 5500 graphics, Intel Core i5 processor, 128GB SSD and FHD display. Based on web-browsing battery run down test conducted by Dell labs in November 2014 with system brightness set to 150-nits (40%) and wireless on. For more information about BrowsingBench, visit www.eembc.org. Test results should be used only to compare one product with another and are not a guarantee you will experience the same battery life. Battery life may be significantly less than the test results and varies depending on your product’s configuration, software, usage, operating conditions, power management settings and other factors. Maximum battery life will decrease with time and use.

³SupportAssist features are not available on Windows RT, Android or Chrome based products.

⁴Onsite Service after Remote Diagnosis is determination by online/phone technician of cause of issue; may involve customer access to inside of system and multiple or extended sessions. If issue is covered by Limited Hardware Warranty and not resolved remotely, technician and/or part will be dispatched, usually in 1 or 2 business days following completion of Remote Diagnosis. Onsite Service is provided by Dell Marketing L.P. Availability varies. Other conditions apply. For complete details about Onsite Service, see dell.com/servicecontracts. Onsite service is not available on Chromebook or Venue tablets, except the Venue 11 Pro.


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