Dell’s Project Athena Chromebooks for enterprise offer LTE and up to 21 hours of battery life

About a year ago, Dell outed a pair of high-end Chromebooks for the enterprise with its Latitude 5300 2-in-1 and 5400. Today the company doubled-down on Chrome OS for businesses with the new Latitude 7410 Chromebook Enterprise available in a traditional clamshell or a convertible form-factor. Both are build around Project Athena guidelines and offer 21 hours of run time on a charge, which Dell says is the “world’s longest battery life of any premium Chromebook.

Adding to the long run-time is a quick-charge feature that gets you from 0 to 35 percent battery life in 20 minutes or up to 80 percent in one hour.

How the company is getting such battery life, I don’t quite know. Both Chromebooks are available with a 6-cell 68 WHr battery, although base models use a 4-cell 52 WHr power pack. Even with the larger batteries than typically found in a Chromebook, I’d like to take one for a spin and test those battery claims

You can choose the 2-in1 model of the Latitude 7410 or save a little money by going with a clamshell. Both share the same 14-inch, 1920 x 1080 resolution display which is non-touch or add touch capabilities as a premium option. And speaking of premium options,

Dell says there will be a brighter 4K display option with low blue light and 400 nits; the 1080p screens top out at 300 nits, which is still quite good.

Under the hood is the now fairly common 10th-generation Intel Core processors, starting at a Core i3 on the base model for $1,099 coming soon and moving up to a Core i7. There’s a $1,329 configuration available now with Core i5, 8 GB of memory, and 128 GB of M.2 NVMe storage but you double up the RAM on the currently available option for an additional cost.

Like other Project Athena Chromebooks, the Dell Latitude 7410 has an integrated fingerprint sensor at the top right of the keyboard. Other features include WiFi 6, Bluetooth 5.1, a pair of USB Type-C ports, two USB Type-A ports, HDMI, memory card reader and an option SIM card slot. Yes, you can get one of these with a dedicated LTE radio inside.

You can find the full spec sheet of the Dell Latitude 7410 Chromebook Enterprise here.

Overall, these look like a nice upgrade from last year’s Latitude Chromebooks for Enterprise, both in functionality and in design. Instead of what I think looked clunky in the 2019 models, these appear a bit more modern and sleek. I do wish Dell had put different ports on opposite sides though: The USB Type-C ports are on the right side of the chassis, while the left side has the two Type-A ports.

With a starting price north of a grand, I don’t expect too many consumers to drop their cash on one of these Chromebooks. Then again, that LTE integration may be appealing to some. On the Dell site, some of the models do not come with a Chrome Enterprise Management license, which is good from a consumer standpoint: You shouldn’t pay for what you don’t need. Businesses, however, will appreciate the license for deployment and management purposes.

Between the recent Windows 10 support via Parallels on Chromebooks and these new Dell Latitude Enterprise devices, I’m wondering if maybe Chrome OS is about to turn the corner on enterprise sales. Yes, some businesses do buy Chromebooks but there aren’t too many models that specifically cater to enterprises. Let’s see what happens!

4 thoughts on “Dell’s Project Athena Chromebooks for enterprise offer LTE and up to 21 hours of battery life

  • August 11, 2020 at 2:38 pm
    Permalink

    Do we know if the LTE is restricted to any service provider of if it is unlocked?

    Reply
    • August 11, 2020 at 2:41 pm
      Permalink

      The spec sheet says support for the US major carriers so I suspect unlocked.

      Reply
    • August 12, 2020 at 12:23 am
      Permalink

      “Alternatively, you can also acquire an activated SIM card separately from your carrier of choice or use an existing SIM card that has already been activated.”

      Reply
  • August 18, 2020 at 9:49 am
    Permalink

    Still holding out for the c1030 elite, though I’m sure it will be expensive with i5 given the prices noted in this post. I had originally heard it would be released this month, anyone hearing an actual release date yet?

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.