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Dell's superthin Adamo--due in February?

Two reports follow the trail of the work Dell supposedly is up to as it seeks to tap into the success of the MacBook Air.

You can never be too thin, the saying goes, and that's apparently the guiding spirit as Dell contemplates the success of Apple's MacBook Air.

Adamo by Dell promo

Reports in the last day or so have offered up some tidbits about an "Adamo" laptop purportedly in the works at Dell. Citing a "totally amazing" source, Engadget says that a superthin, black-and-silver laptop by that name is a bona fide product-in-waiting, with a little extra emphasis on "waiting":

(T)hat rumored Adamo is very much real, and very much like what we've been hearing. Apparently the device -- which the company plans to market as the "world's thinnest laptop" -- was slated to be released this month, but has been pushed back till at least February....(A)nd we're told that it's most definitely Dell's play to nab some of that MacBook Air marketshare.

For those who like their computers to come with a touch of softness, that Engadget report also offers several photos of a "leather-wrapped" Dell Studio XPS 13.

Meanwhile, Ashlee Vance of The New York Times, in the newspaper's Bits blog, laid out some clues about the likely imminence of Adamo, including an "Adamobydell" Web site and some marketing materials in the hands of a luxury goods publication.

Vance also offers this telling anecdote:

But most telling of all might have been the reaction of Michael Tatelman, Dell's vice president in charge of consumer sales and marketing, to my question about whether or not Dell had an Air-like product in store. Mr. Tatelman's mouth gaped open and his eyes darted away from my face.

If looks could reveal product dimensions, then I'd guess that Dell's going even thinner and lighter than Apple.

After a couple of moments, Mr. Tatelman said, "I think we need to get some iconic products out there, so people associate Dell's brand with other things." Namely, that's goodbye to clunky, and hello to sleek.