Huawei struck gold with their 2018 flagship laptop, the MateBook X Pro. The MateBook X Pro hits the sweet spot where price, performance, form, and function come together and result in a product that is truly special. As Christmas 2018 nears and thoughts turn to what devices to give and receive, the MateBook X Pro should be at or near the top of almost anyone’s laptop list.
WHAT MAKES IT SPECIAL
- The display – The MateBook X Pro has a 13.9 inch 3:2 3000×2000 LTPS multi-touch screen that is gorgeous. The viewing angles on this laptop are crazy. I can see and read the screen at almost 90 degrees from center. The bezels are so tiny that Huawei claims a 91% screen-to-body ratio. Simply put, it is the best laptop display I’ve seen.
- The keyboard – They keyboard has excellent travel distance and is a pleasure to use. Keys are perfectly spaced and the backlight is nice, fading in and out as the keyboard is used.
- The form – The MateBook X Pro is an all aluminum affair. If you’ve used a modern MacBook you know exactly what to expect from the MateBook. It’s perhaps a little too similar to Apple’s designs (a common knock on Huawei phones for years) but it is, nevertheless, beautiful. It’s slim and light and well made. It really feels like a premium product.
- The fingerprint reader – Fingerprint security is nothing new in the Windows world but this one is particularly good. It’s recessed and integrated with the power button. What makes it great is that the device reads your fingerprint as you turn it on then automatically logs you in to Windows when the system boots. It is a brilliant implementation scheme and one other manufacturers should copy.
- Performance – The MateBook X Pro ships with either an i7 8550U or i5 8250U CPU. Both are 8th generation Intel quad-core designs and provide plenty of power for the average user. And, in addition to the integrated Intel 620 GPU, the i7 version has an NVIDIA GeForce MX150 GPU with 2 GB RAM. It handles everything I’ve thrown at it – including plenty of Steam games and even Fortnite – with ease.
- Expansion – While other manufacturers like Apple and Microsoft skimp on the ports they build into their hardware, Huawei has delivered. The MateBook has 2 USB-C ports that can be used for charging and data transfer. One of the ports is Thunderbolt 3 for fast data transfer. They’ve also included a USB-A port for compatibility and a 3.5 mm headphone jack. Few other laptops offer such a range of connectivity options. It supports yesterday, today, and tomorrow.
- Battery life – The MateBook X Pro will get most users between 8 and 10 hours of battery life. That’s quite good for a machine like this. Even better, it supports fast charging via the included 65 W Power Delivery charger.
Months after its release, the MateBook X Pro is still my go-to laptop recommendation. I suspect it will stay that way for quite a while. The MateBook is the rare bird that lives up to and exceeds even the loftiest expectations. It is a special device. The MateBook X Pro is available for $1500 for the i7 version and $1200 for the i5 model (when not sold out).