Beyond the fresh paint job, the MateBook X’s design has simply been refined. It’s a little lighter at 1kg, still slim at 13.6mm, and the 13in display’s bezels have been narrowed ever so slightly. The 3:2 LTPS screen has also had a welcome resolution bump up to 3K.
Inside the MateBook X you'll find 10th-gen Intel chips up to an i7, paired with 512GB SSD storage and 16GB RAM - though only slightly sluggish DDR3 RAM, oddly enough. It’s also the first Huawei laptop to support Wi-Fi 6.
Perhaps the biggest change is actually to the company’s Huawei Share tech. This tech lets you connect a compatible Huawei or Honor phone to your MateBook to sync the screen, share files, or take calls over the laptop.
It’s been around for a couple years now, but was previously built into an obtrusive sticker on the bottom-right of the laptop, an unwelcome design blemish on some otherwise very slick hardware. Huawei has now managed to squeeze the tech inside the new, larger trackpad (which also features some nifty sounding haptic feedback), both hiding it away and making it a touch more convenient by increasing the detection area and range.
That improved Huawei Share trackpad integration also makes its way into the MateBook 14, but otherwise the changes here are less visible. The chassis remains essentially unchanged from last year’s model, but the internals have been redesigned entirely to make the jump from Intel to AMD’s Ryzen 4000 processors, with support up to the Ryzen 7 4800H.
The MateBook 14 is a little more of a productivity powerhouse than the X. It’s chunkier and heavier, at 1.49kg, but that gets you a 14in display, a bigger battery, USB-A and HMDI ports, and those Ryzen chips – likely to outperform the 10th gen Intel in the MateBook X.
The company was vague on why the 14 has jumped ship to AMD while the X sticks with Intel, but it's likely mostly a question of positioning the 14 as a proper productivity device with extra power to enable that, while the X is more of a slim and light ultrabook, where form trumps function.
That might also explain why the 14 won’t get the X’s fancy colour options – it's just Space Grey and Mystic Silver as standard – and other specs include a 2K display, 8 or 16GB DDR4 RAM, and 256 or 512GB of storage.
The MateBook X will be available from October, and will cost €1,599 for an i5 model, and €1,799 for the i7 version. The MateBook 14 will arrive around the same time, but cost much less, with prices starting from €849 for a Ryzen 5 model, and going up to €1,049 for a Ryzen 7 version with more RAM, more storage, and a touchscreen panel.
The new MateBooks were announced at the Huawei Developer Conference, where earlier today the company showed off EMUI 11 and confirmed that from next year it will begin releasing smartphones running its own HarmonyOS software - and not Android.
Updated with pricing and release date.