back to article Huawei MateBook Pro X: PC makers look out, the phone guys are here

I have one very important thing to tell you about Huawei's laptop – and it's so important, everything else about it seems like a bonus. About a decade ago, the 4:3 ratio display rapidly began to disappear from laptops, as manufacturers became obsessed about making our PCs fit for TVs and movies. "You like widescreen movies, so …

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  1. Aladdin Sane Silver badge

    How much?

    1. djstardust Silver badge

      The price goes up and down but approx. £1200 for the i5 and £1500 for the i7 with dedicated graphics.

      Almost bought one last week but had second thoughts due to budget and being so close to xmas etc.

      Lenovo are the direct competition with the Yoga 930 but their screens are utterly terrible and dull. This ticks all the boxes perfectly.

      Also shows just how much our fruity friends are ripping people off though.

      1. bombastic bob Silver badge
        Linux

        if it ships with Win-10-nic pre-installed, I won't want it.

        Does it come with Linux?

        (I assume it's not an apple clone)

        1. Waseem Alkurdi

          The Linux ones are identical to their Windows counterparts.

          Just nuke Windows off it.

          And yep, it is an Apple clone.

        2. Wayland Bronze badge

          It should not matter to a Linux user what OS it comes with since you will be putting your own flavor on it. It's a PC so will run anything. I'd want to know if it's storage is plugged in or soldered.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            It matters because if it comes with Windows, you're paying licensing fees for a product you won't even use.

        3. password1234567890

          Funny how wanting support for linux is viewed so negatively. My Dell XPS 13 is verynice, but now I see this I'd buy it in a minute if I could install ubuntu/fedora/whatever on it. One fecking USB A port, that's all I miss on the Dell. Although I'd be just as happy if logitech would sell a fecking USB-C wireless dongle.

    2. Tigra 07 Silver badge
      Angel

      RE: Aladdin

      Amazon sells it for £1200, unless you add a bigger SSD. Argos also sells it. Want a different region? Here's the link: https://consumer.huawei.com/en/laptops/matebook-x-pro/

      1. Steve Crook

        Re: RE: Aladdin

        Only Amazon have the i7, 16GB, 512 version and currently want a whopping £1800+. The Microsoft store in the US also stock it for $1500.

        At £1800 it doesn't come even close to an XPS 13.

        I'll wait.

    3. David Shaw

      mate pro x pricing is silly in Italy

      the basic model i5 256GB SSD is €1499

      the top model i7 512GB SSD is just 53 euros more, from a usual large box shifter

  2. Piro

    Having the incorrect aspect ratio in the very title of the article is sure to trigger people like me. Happy now?

    Seriously though, this looks nice.

    A reasonable port selection combined with a very nice screen, and even discrete graphics.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Yes, I'm still confused, I get the impression that it's a 3000×2000 resolution on a 4:3 screen ratio.

      1. Wyrdness

        You only have to go to the specs page on the Huawei website to see:

        DISPLAY

        Resolution: 3000 x 2000, 260 PPI

        Aspect ratio: 3:2

        So no, it's not 4:3

        1. paulf Silver badge
          WTF?

          Yet from the article sub-heading: "A compact, grown-up 4:3 machine"

          1. bombastic bob Silver badge
            WTF?

            that assumes the pixel ratio is 1:1 - so is it 4x3 dimensions, but 3:2 pixels?

            1. MarkElmes

              No this is definately a 3:2 screen - not 4:3. Same resolution as the SurfaceBook. (I'd rather the SurfaceBook - I love my one)

  3. PhilipN Silver badge

    Not surprised

    Good article. FWIW since it is tangential I took delivery of the Mate 20 Pro phone a week ago and I am mightily impressed, not just with the phone but in the sense that Huawei are making some very smart, coherent and thoughtful decisions to push themselves up the sales charts in both phones and PC’s.

    Bound to be in fact already is political pushback against Huawei but if this gives the PC industry a much-needed boot up the arse it is a Good Thing.

    P.S. 32.5 cm tall? You mean y.... Oh the bag is 32.5 cm. Phew!

    1. shedied

      Re: Not surprised

      Now that I've seen the prices... could you show me the bag?

    2. The Original Steve

      Re: Not surprised

      Same here - brought the Mate20 Pro at the weekend and my word it's impressive. Other than the hefty price tag it's hands down the best phone I've ever used. Now I've ditched the stock launcher (using Microsoft Launcher - it's actually really rather good) the rest of their flavour of Android seems more than acceptable to me.

      If the PC's are the same quality, I'm very much interested.

  4. Pascal Monett Silver badge

    I rather like it, but for one detail

    It's a niggle, but for me it is important : the keyboard lacks a dedicated numeric keypad. I am very used to that, and not having one is a miss for me.

    Still, I'm sure I've seen USB numpads, so all is not lost. I might look into that more closely when the time comes to replace my current workhorse.

    1. soulrideruk Bronze badge

      Re: I rather like it, but for one detail

      I don't think I've seen a dedicated numeric keypad on a laptop for years?

      Can you point me in the direction of where I would be able to find such a device?

      1. John 110

        Re: I rather like it, but for one detail

        Acer aspire?

      2. rmason Silver badge

        Re: I rather like it, but for one detail

        Most of the full sized lenovos have numpads still.

        For eg all the E570 units we have here.

      3. analyzer
        Happy

        Re: I rather like it, but for one detail

        Numeric keyboards are abundant at this UK address novatech which do cheap to eye bogglingly expensive laptops all with numeric keypads.

        No please don't thank me, you may not be a Brit :-)

      4. tony72

        Re: I rather like it, but for one detail

        The current Dell Precisions have a full size numeric keypad, unlike the previous generation.

      5. Crypto Monad

        Re: I rather like it, but for one detail

        You could always plug in an IPv6 Buddy

        1. TG2.2

          Re: I rather like it, but for one detail

          The IPv6 Buddy is not a proper number pad either ... no + - or x keys .. for math functions.

          And like several others.. the lack of a dedicated number pad on laptop keyboard means this is a no for me.. I deal with IP addresses all day ... I have never been as fast on the top row numbers, as I have been with number pad.

          1. Crypto Monad

            Re: I rather like it, but for one detail

            The IPv6 Buddy suggestion was tongue-in-cheek - but if you google "usb numeric keypad", you'll find a ton of standard-layout ones, many for under a tenner - and bluetooth options too.

      6. muhfugen

        Re: I rather like it, but for one detail

        HP EliteBooks

      7. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: I rather like it, but for one detail

        Fujitsu's U series at least the larger ones come with a dedicated. Num pad section.

      8. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: I rather like it, but for one detail

        Can you point me in the direction of where I would be able to find such a device?

        http://lmgtfy.com/?q=dedicated+numeric+keypad+on+a+laptop

        1. ArrZarr Silver badge
          Happy

          Re: I rather like it, but for one detail

          Any device in the 17" Screen range will definitely have a numeric keypad due to the extra real estate necessitated by matching the larger screen.

          What you've got to watch out for more is the keyboard layout (ANSI vs ISO). The different enter key will drive you wild if you make a mistake.

      9. AndrueC Silver badge
        Happy

        Re: I rather like it, but for one detail

        The HP Probook I bought a couple of months ago has one. It also has a 'clicky' mouse pad instead of touch only and a 17.3" screen. Nice bit of kit in fact.

      10. src

        Re: I rather like it, but for one detail

        My VAIO S15 has great keyboard including a keypad. This is also where a widescreen monitor makes sense. If you have a wide keyboard then a widescreen monitor becomes a more sensible choice.

      11. rototype

        Re: I rather like it, but for one detail

        Dell 5590

      12. eionmac

        Re: I rather like it, but for one detail

        Dell Latitude E6530 has dedicated keypad. I have it in use for many years.

    2. big_D Silver badge

      Re: I rather like it, but for one detail

      The form factor is too small for a num pad. You would need a 15" version, or the keyboard would be so small and squashed, that it would be all but unusable.

  5. K Silver badge

    This thing looks slick.. give me, give me, give me

    I'll admit, I'm a turn-coat, I brought my first MBP last year (refurb), as I was sick of the stagnant laptop market - But I think I'll be turning-coat once more in the new year for one of these :D

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: This thing looks slick.. give me, give me, give me

      I'm more thinking of this one as an extra to my MBP which I use for the really secure stuff. The problem is that some customers continue to use Windows, and that means I need a separate machine to stay up to date - this may just fit the bill.

      What would turn this from a "maybe" in "ok, f*ck the budget and get it now" proposition would be the news that Huawei was intelligent enough to also actively support Linux on these machines. Heck, I'd probably get a few - customers like us to pre-configure stuff and if I wander in with such a machine in a Windows place they'll probably order one on the spot.

      As a matter of fact, I may already know one customer who'd buy two as they're having problems with their Fujitsu machines (one is a tablet/keyboard thing whose hardware never quite worked properly)..

  6. Michael H.F. Wilkinson Silver badge
    Happy

    I must say I like that display and spec. I frequently process BIG images of astronomical objects, many of which have a more-or-less 1:1 aspect ratio. 3:2 is fine, an 3000x2000 rather better than my current FHD screen. Sorely tempted, I must say.

  7. Tom7

    Cons

    It tops out at 8GB RAM. Yes, you can fit more - because when I buy a new laptop, the first thing I like to do is throw away the RAM it came with (because the chance of there being a free slot is PRECISELY zero) and spluring another £150 on it.

    13.9" is a little on the small side for my not-as-sharp-as-they-were eyes.

    But oh my, it's pretty.

    1. oiseau Silver badge
      Facepalm

      Re: Cons

      Hello:

      But oh my, it's pretty.

      Indeed it is, kudos for the 4:3 ratio.

      But that's not why I'd purchase one. (and why the constant comparison to Apple stuff?)

      What about the battery, not much mention of it in the article save that it lasts roughly 10 hours.

      Is it user replaceable? Or do I have to throw the thing away when it goes south or fails out of warranty?

      Cheers,

      O.

      1. Dave 126 Silver badge

        Re: Cons

        > (and why the constant comparison to Apple stuff?)

        - individual models of MacBook are commonly seen in the wild, so most readers will find a comparison to a MacBook more useful than to an Alienware XYZ 3000.

        - MacBooks have never had 16:9 screens, unlike the majority of laptops until recently (MS's Surface range is 3:2, and some Lenovos iirc)

        - the industrial design of the Huawei is similar to a MacBook

        - a fellow commentard here has expressed interest in this machine, his current machine us a MacBook

        1. Jerome

          Re: Cons

          "- MacBooks have never had 16:9 screens"

          ...except for the MacBook Air 11", which had a very 16:9 1366x768 display.

      2. AndrueC Silver badge
        Unhappy

        Re: Cons

        I'd buy for a genuine 4:3 ratio because my ageing eyes require me to run with desktops zoomed in (currently 125% at work, 150% at home). At work that means sometimes having to scroll web sites to use them at home on the 17.3" laptop I'm forever having to scroll web pages. What makes it seem worse is that so many web sites today love to waste horizontal space with stupidly wide margins.

        I can only hope that as today's web designers age and presbyopia hits them that they will push harder for design to take zooming into consideration. I'm also hoping someone will address the problem with mobile phones but I fear the only solution there is direct visual cortical stimulation :-/

    2. Charlie Clark Silver badge

      Re: Cons

      The website says 8 GB / 16 GB LPDDR3 2133 MHz*. So 16 GB is possible but I guess it's not user-configurable.

      As you grow older you will need to adjust the resolution and, for desktop use, use an external monitor.

  8. tentimes

    I don't like the aspect ration

    No good for games or movies :(

    1. Aladdin Sane Silver badge

      Re: I don't like the aspect ration

      Can't you just ration your media consumption?

    2. soulrideruk Bronze badge

      Re: I don't like the aspect ration

      If your primary use for a laptop is watching videos, may I suggest a TV and DVD player/Streaming box combo? Much cheaper than the laptop, and is actually designed for watching movies.

      Then you can use the laptop for the real computing tasks it is desinged for.

      1. Patrician

        Re: I don't like the aspect ration

        "....... a TV and DVD player/Streaming box combo....."

        Can't be carried around on trips and used to watch films/TV in hotels.

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