Ahead of the official start of Mobile World Congress tomorrow, Huawei has gotten in early on press day announcing the Huawei MateBook at the Montjüic Exhibition Centre in the centre of town, at one of the biggest Huawei events I’ve ever seen, and indeed, that most of my Australian media cohort have seen too.
The MateBook is a 2-in-1 laptop designed to meet the needs of today’s modern business users (who we’d have called road warriors in years gone by). We know Huawei have developed the cred in beauty and power in mobile, so extending it to a convertible laptop/tablet really isn’t a big stretch, and they’ve one it again here. The MateBook is an amazing 6.9mm thick, and weighs in at just 640g for a fully-functional laptop/tablet hybrid.
Richard Yu, Huawei’s Consumer Business Group CEO, told Ausdroid:
“With this landmark device, Huawei is demonstrating our industry-leading design and manufacturing expertise to bring a beautifully crafted flagship product to market that is redefining the new style of business; connected computing across all devices in almost every scenario. Huawei has successfully channeled its comprehensive experience and excellence in building premium mobile products into the needs of the modern business environment by introducing a highly efficient device seamlessly capable of integrating work and entertainment functions.”
Huawei’s MateBook features an sixth generation, Dual Core 3.1 GHz Intel Core M processor, which allows the device to really straddle the divide between mobility and full computing. Built to operate on Windows 10, MateBook also delivers the best in productivity tools that we’ve come to expect from Microsoft, including its browser and personal assistant, and of course its ubiquitous and established Office suite.
MateBook combines the mobility of a smartphone (well, tablet, really) with the power and productivity of a laptop; it’s minimal, it’s slim and it’s undoubtedly unique. When paired with the MateBook keyboard case, made from environmentally friendly PU soft leather, the MateBook becomes a full-powered laptop solution, with ergonomic, chiclet style keys with a larger key surface to minimise the inconvenience of typical on-the-go keyboards. Unlike most keyboard cases, the MateBook keyboard features a touchpad too, and the keyboard cover provides the best kind of protection for a tablet too — all around impact protection to reduce the risk of broken screens.
Featuring an 12-inch IPS multi-touch screen, the MateBook is further enhanced by an ultra-narrow frame and screen to body ratio of 84 percent with just 12mm bezels. It can and does display full, true-to-life colours and its colourful itself, coming in a champagne gold with a white panel, and space silver with black panels around the display.
All this sounds like it would be thirsty, and it likely is, but Huawei have put some battery smarts into the MateBook too. Featuring an 4,430 mAh Li-Ion battery, there’s enough juice for 10 hours work. The battery can be fully charged in just two and a half hours, too, so when there’s not time for a full charge, you can top it off quickly. On top of this, the charger is tiny, no bigger than a mobile charger featuring USB Type-C.
The rumoured stylus companion is here too, dubbed the MatePen, and it offers 2048 levels of sensitivity perfectly capturing users’ subtle and diverse pen-tip actions with zero delay. This is akin to Wacom’s level of sensitivity, and with an elastomer-tipped stylus, we’re really seeing a heap of innovation here. You can even use the MatePen as a laser pointer when delivering presentations, and it has buttons for controlling your presentation too, making the MatePen a truly versatile companion for your MateBook.
If that wasn’t enough, with built-in LTE, you can use the MateBook anywhere, and if you have other mobile devices with you, the MateBook can double as a WiFi mobile hotspot for other devices or nearby users, allowing them to share your internet connection for truly mobile performance.
Last, but not least, is the MateDock, an all-in-one dock that includes VGA, HDMI, USB ports and Ethernet as well. As well as providing a nifty place to store the MatePen too, you can carry it around with ease (chuck it in the bottom of your bag kind of thing) and have full desktop level connectivity wherever you need it.
Huawei’s MateBook will start at $699 USD through to $1599 for the top-end model, and the accessories will be priced at $129 for the keyboard accessory, $59 for the MatePen, and $89 for the MateDock.
Australian availability and pricing is yet to be announced and we’ll update once we’ve got it.
Chris Rowland attended MWC 2016 in Barcelona as guest of Huawei. Thanks guys!