Something big is coming and it goes by the number 18. So says a new teaser video posted by Alienware (opens in new tab) on Twitter in reference, almost certainly, to a new 18-inch laptop. Meanwhile, Razer is also rumoured to be planning its own 18-inch beast. Could 18-inch could turn out to be the new 17-inch in 2023? It's certainly looking like that.
Alienware last sold an 18-inch model back in 2015, so this isn't an unprecedented form factor. But much has changed since then in terms of everything from screen tech to CPU and GPU performance.
The last 18-incher, the aptly named Alienware 18 (opens in new tab), was an absolute monster, complete with dual GPUs. But it also only ran at 1080p, had a DVD writer, weighed in at 5.5kg and sported screen bezels roughly the width of the Panama canal.
It was a machine from a very different era.
At this early stage, there are absolutely no indications regarding the specifications of the new Alienware 18. But with Nvidia to announce new GPUs (opens in new tab) at CES in less than a month, it's a safe bet that RTX 40-series graphics power will be under the hood.
Intel's upcoming 13th Gen mobile CPUs are also likely to appear. So, the main question is whether Alienware will stick with the uber chunky design ethic of the last 18-inch model, or go for something more sleek.
There's always a trade off when it comes to styling and performance in a gaming laptop, but we suspect Alienware will go for a skinnier design this time around. At the very least, we'd expect to see much slimmer bezels and likely at the option of a OLED and mini-LED displays, with both 1440p and 4K featuring. High refresh rates of at least 240Hz are pretty much a given.
Back in 2015, the Alienware 18 went for between $2,500 and $4,500 depending on specification. Add eight years and plenty of intervening inflation and it's slightly scary to think how high the new model might go. It's hard to imagine a starting price below three grand.
Razer is also rumoured to be working on an 18-inch laptop (opens in new tab) with 13th Gen Intel CPUs. There's a decent chance both will be unveiled at CES in January. Watch this space if uber-sized gaming portables are your thing. I think you'll be pleased.