The new contender for the MacBook Pro’s crown

The Huawei MateBook X Pro’s 13.9in screen, unusual webcam, Dolby audio and slick performance all impress

Huawei MateBook X Pro, about £1,500
Huawei MateBook X Pro, about £1,500 | Image: Hugh Threlfall

Friends of mine in Scotland had, for many years, a TV made by Nokia. It was just a TV, but the unexpected branding was quite the conversation piece. So it is with this laptop by Huawei, a brand better known for its phones and servers. But this Huawei laptop that runs on Windows 10 and goes by the not unsilly name MateBook X Pro, is a contender for the best offering of 2018 in a product category that has become rather unsexy, even if it’s what a large proportion of us use as our primary work tool. 

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The MateBook X Pro is a direct competitor to Apple’s MacBook Pro. It’s close to but not quite as beautiful as an Apple laptop – a bit shiny. But the 13.9in (touch) screen is a delight and the keyboard is the best I’ve come across on any laptop. The X Pro’s performance is also scorching, using the latest Intel processor, with sharp and seamless graphics. Huawei has a novel idea for the webcam too – a pop-up camera on one of the function keys. This affords an odd view, rather up your nose, but it’s a neat gimmick. The audio system is Dolby Atmos. This is Dolby’s best cinema sound system, and I was expecting to be blown away. I was – no more so, however, than by the sound on Apple’s smaller 12in MacBook, which remains a wonder of the tech world.

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