Last year, Huawei released MateBook X Pro, the amazing laptop that reached the right mix of performance, portability, ports and a price better than anything else you can buy. So for the new MateBook X Pro, announced today and available later this year, Huawei did not shake the boat: it still has the same design and the same number of ports. The new things are quite small: a slightly faster processor, a slightly improved graphics card, a slightly upgraded Thunderbolt 3 port and an option for up to 1TB of memory.
Along with the new MateBook X Pro, Huawei also announced a lower MateBook 1
There is only one visual difference between the new MateBook X Pro and the one that came out last year: the logo on the laptop cover is now just the Huawei brand instead of the full logo on the older model. Otherwise, it is the same laptop, full of a 13.9-inch, 450-nit, 3000 x 2000 pixel touchscreen; Keyboard in full size with 1.2mm key; fingerprint scanner embedded in the power button; and 2.93 lb weight. Both USB-C and one USB-A port remain, although the Thunderbolt port has been upgraded to four bandwidths, which Huawei says can support external GPUs such as Nvidia's RTX2080. the same webcam that is embedded in the keyboard's function line. This was the most controversial feature of MateBook X Pro as it provides a terribly unpleasant picture of video calls, but Huawei apparently does not think it necessary to change it for the model this year.
The processors are Core i5-8265U or Core i7-8565U, which Huawei claims are 10% faster than last year's. X Pro has 8GB or 16GB of RAM and between 256GB and 1TB of memory. The Core i7 comes with the discreet graphics of the Nvidia MX250, slightly coinciding with last year's MX150 graphics card.
MateBook 14 is very similar to X Pro, but has 14-inch, 2160 x 1440 pixels, and a slightly larger body. It weighs a little more, at 3.28 lbs, and trades the Thunderbolt 3 Pro ports for one USB-C, one HDMI, one USB-A 3.0 and one USB-A 2.0 port. It has the same keyboard, trackpad, fingerprint scanner, and pop-up webcam as a more expensive model. Instead of the Pro quad-core speaker system, MateBook 14 has two speakers underneath
The MateBook 14 shares the same processor and XU GPU options, although it will reach 512GB of memory. Huawei says the 57.4Wh battery is good for 15 hours of video playback or 10.5 hours of web browser, which is slightly longer than the battery life of X Pro thanks to the lower resolution screen 14.
Both the model have a new software feature called Huawei Share, which facilitates the transfer of images and other files between Huawei phone and laptop. Huawei says it can transfer data to 30Mbps, and the feature is triggered by NFC chips both on the laptop and on the phone. If it sounds like Apple's AirDrop function, that's because it is.
It's no big surprise that Huawei has not changed much for this X Pro update, and MateBook 14 brings many of the same qualities, probably will be even lower price. Both models have to be more convincing than MateBook 13, released earlier this year, which had strange limitations on its USB ports and disappointing battery life. Of course, no rebate will make no difference if you share the same distrust of Huawei's products as the US government. But if this is not a problem for you, the latest round of Huawei laptops seem as convincing as last year's models.
Huawei says MateBook X Pro and MateBook 14 will be available on the world markets before later this spring. You'll be sure to update it with pricing and availability information when it's available.