Last week i got the chance to spend some time with the huawei mate x, its one of the few foldable phones on the market, and i think its the one thats the closest to what we all imagined that they would be like so whats it like to Use im andrew for gsm arena, and this is an actual hands on of the huawei mate x, Music. To start with, i dont know whether to call the matex a phone or a tablet when open its, certainly the thinnest one ive ever used and its surprisingly light for the size of its display im really enjoying this departure from heavy equals premium. Because, honestly, i dont like to carry around a brick with me. This phone is a great foray into that feature. Actually, this phone makes you feel like youre in the future and its really easy to get used to going back to a regular phone feels a little bit limiting thanks to the intuitive design and, like i said this is what a folding phone should feel like and Theres a few reasons for this for one, the x is super comfortable in the hand the falcon wing design always so proud. It makes it easy to grip, and even the power button is almost too conveniently placed, because i accidentally kept turning the screen on. It doubles. As an always on fingerprint reader and its wicked fast, its pretty fast to get registered with it too, when the mate x is closed, theres no gap except for a tiny half moon where the hinges and it has the weight and dimensions of a regular all by Large flagship phone, the volume buttons are in the bar next to the power button and theres a usbc port on the bottom.
Everything is easy to reach, no matter how youre, using the phone, also no matter whether its open folded or with the cameras facing towards you theres, always plenty of screen. When you fold it, the mate x automatically detects which side of the display youre facing and will light it up its possible to fool and have the screen face down instead. But you just have to open and close the device back up in order to fix that. So its not really that much of a problem, the nearly nine inch screen itself is excellent and it had good contrast, brightness and from what i saw you wouldnt have too many issues with sunlight legibility. I expected that the bendable tech would mean that the screen is less saturated or would look off somehow, but that wasnt the case. The squarish form factor was a bit strange, especially in a world where 18 by 9 aspect ratios are no longer uncommon, but even so the video playing area is still larger than what youd find on a lot of phones, not to mention that for everything else, its Easier to read things browse the internet and generally consume media, but wait. I know some of you are about to ask this question what about the bend in the screen? Okay, so i went in being pretty suspicious of this as well. So what i did was open and close the device as much as i could and tilted it every which way to see when the bend in the screen would appear and when it would not be noticeable.
And it turns out that most of the time when youre, looking at the device straight youre not really going to notice the fact that theres a crease its pretty much invisible. If, however, youve tilted it towards the sun, then you will see that its there and the thing is dont expect this imperfection to disappear by the time that this phone is ready for retail huawei knows that this is a problem and theyre probably working on it, but For right now, this is a first generation product, which means its gon na stay here for at least this version of the phone. Hopefully they iron it out pretty soon, so they can start breathing down apples neck with some competition in another department see. I have a lot of friends who draw for a living and a foldable tablet with pen support would be pretty much game changing. They could take it anywhere. They could work anywhere at a moments notice, but when i asked huawei about it, they said that theyre not planning on releasing any pens or pencils anytime soon. Perhaps one of the reasons for this is because, while you cant see the bend, you might be able to feel it while drawing, but alright, though, im impatient for that part of the future for now theres plenty to marvel at for one. This thing has an insane screen to body ratio unless youre using the selfie camera function and even then it absolutely trumps the galaxy folds preview window.
I have to admit that this is a double edged sword, because this means that the screen is constantly exposed. I seriously hope that this phone shapes with the case, because otherwise i would be wary of putting it in a pocket or in a bag or anything that isnt just covered in bubble. Wrap in velvet youll also have to be careful around water, as there is no ip protection because of the hinge components in another generation or two. There might be a way to seal it and im expecting that theyre gon na find how to do this pretty quickly. But for now i panicked whenever the phone was on the same table as a glass of water, and this is a little bit annoying, because the screen is actually more difficult to clean than a regular glass one. But on the bright side it seems to be pretty durable because the phone has been in use, at least the one that i tested for a couple of weeks and aside from the smudges it looked brand new. Also, the display seems to be less slippery than a regular glass one and the inside of the phone or back of the phone. However, you want to call it also. Doesnt seem to be very slippery. It doesnt seem to be made of metal or glass. It might be made of some sort of very high quality plastic, but for now we really dont know what the material is.
Theres, also a little square on the back that says advanced composite material, which reportedly helps with the phones connectivity. The x has four antennas inside it and supports 5g too speaking of wireless connectivity, theres no headphone jack here – and this is the first and only phone that ive encountered on which this decision makes sense, theres, simply not a lot of space for it. The bluetooth connection worked pretty well and so did using a headphone jack dongle. Despite the massive screen battery life should be pretty good too thanks to the 4 500 milliamp hour battery, and when you run out of juice, there is an insane 55 watt supercharger to take advantage of. It can charge from zero to 85 percent in half an hour and it can double as a charger for your matebook x, pro or matebook, 14 or maybe 13, which i really love, because i embrace fully the universality of usbc due to space constraints in the clever Folding there is a single triple camera setup, thats very similar to the main cameras on the mate 20 pro, but not exactly identical theres, a 40 megapixel main shooter, a 60 megapixel ultrawide camera and an 8 megapixel telephoto lens theres no need for a front camera because All you need to do is turn the cameras to face you, while the display is folded. This also means that you get excellent selfies and video calling because youre not dealing with a smaller sensor when shooting photos and videos with the screen unfolded.
The preview window fills up the entire display. I guess this would make compositions easier if youre shooting something for instagram in folded mode. You can also shoot someone while theres a live preview for them on the other side, so you can adjust their hair or their posture in general, you can tell that theres been a lot of thought put into the xs design and the only thing that i found To be annoying was the last thing that you would think of its the sound that the hinge makes when you fold it. It sounds like youre cracking the bones of a tiny, fragile robot and i felt like i was snapping the phone into every single time that i closed it up, but i was told that its okay. This is how its supposed to sound and its just the sound of all the little components if thats the price we have to pay for foldable phones, im gladly paying it now as far as the actual price goes well ill, get into that in a bit. So the hardware is great, but what about the software in general emui seemed to work quite well, and if youve ever used a huawei or an honor device, itll be pretty familiar browsing and looking at things seems to be easier with a larger display and games are More immersive i played need for speed which the x handled quite readily with the kirin 980 chipset, the phone supports android pi 9.
1 and after its release, android q should quickly become available because google is releasing foldable phone support. For now, the software hasnt been finalized. So there were some bugs. I couldnt watch a full screen video while using another app. Nor could i adjust the size of the split screen windows but, of course, huawei is promising to fix these issues and make the software more intuitive as a whole. I really hope that theyve released some sort of solution for the keyboard as well, because, even though the display is big, its not big enough for regular typing, at least not comfortably like your fingers, will be super smashed while simultaneously being too large for regular swipe typing. Although worst case scenario, you can just fold it up and type like you would on a regular phone speaking of keyboards, you could theoretically buy a portable bluetooth keyboard and have a machine thats capable of a lot of productivity, at least as far as anything involving typing Is concerned really the biggest barrier towards productivity on this machine is not the hardware or the manufacturer its the fact that there is an android problem see the entire android tablet ecosystem, as far as apps goes, is absolutely atrocious in comparison to ios, developers need to sit Down and make better apps that are actually easy to use, because this form factor is going to become more and more common. I seriously hope seriously hoping here that the foldable phone revolution, thats about to happen, puts pressure on developers to make this a reality, because otherwise itll just be a waste.
We already have these super powerful computers in our pockets and we cant really use our capabilities to their full extent, just because the software isnt there, yet maybe now, with the advent of foldable phones, therell, be more pressure on developers to make apps that are easy to Work on, while on the go or maybe therell, be more partnerships like the one between adobe and samsung. After so much stagnation in the mobile world, foldable phones seem like an awesome development. This goes way beyond notches and whole cutouts and hints at a future where we can actually have a workstation in our pockets. This is a whole lot of freedom that weve never really had before and yeah. This is expensive, but honestly, are we really expecting anything else? After three years of r d and an entirely new category of phone, i really dont think so. Also this phone right now is not for everyone. If you want a portable workstation, it makes more sense to invest the money in a computer or an ipad pro, and a phone like seriously itll cost pretty much the same. The huawei mate x is for those that want a taste of whats to come for those who want portability and flexibility in their lives already and for the developers who should really be getting on this and as far as the rest of us goes well personally. Ill. Really be enjoying the foldable phone race thats just begun, thanks for watching.