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Dell Makes Multi-Touch Technology Available For Tablet PC

The software adds several two-finger operated features to the XT touch screen, including scrolling, zooming, and programmable double taps.
Dell on Tuesday released what it says is an "easy-to-install" multi-touch module for the company's Latitude XT convertible tablet PC.

Convertible PCs are machines that can be used as notebooks, but also have a rotating screen that can fold down on top of the keyboard to provide a flat writing surface. The software module for the XT adds several two-finger operated features to the XT touch screen, including scrolling, zooming, and programmable double tap to accomplish tasks such as launching a Web browser or turning the screen off to save power. The software is available at no charge through Dell's Web site.

Along with introducing the new functionality for its tablet, Dell expanded its solid-state drive offerings with the addition of a 128-GB drive. Dell also said it planned to introduce its "next generation" Latitude notebooks in the coming weeks.

"We plan to finish this year with 50% more products in our laptop portfolio and deliver innovation our competitors can't match," Jeff Clarke, senior VP for Dell's product group, said in a statement.

Dell is selling the new solid-state drive for $649 in the United States on Precision and Latitude systems. The drive will be offered next week on XPS and Alienware systems. The new technology costs the same as what Dell was charging for its 64-GB SSD.

SSDs are far more expensive than hard disk drives, which are available in much higher capacities. SSDs, however, have no moving parts and are eight-and-a-half times more shock tolerant and have a predicted reliability more than three times that of standard notebook hard drives, Dell said.

In the first quarter of the year, Dell had its strongest quarter in almost two years with a 21.6% rise in year-over-year PC shipments, according to IDC. Dell is the world's second largest computer seller behind Hewlett-Packard. Dell, however, is the sales leader in the United States.

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