Huawei Mate X 5G Hands-On: The Folding Phone Is The Future

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Huawei Mate X 5G Hands-On: The Folding Phone Is The Future


Seeing a folding phone from a distance is a flash of confusion a cognitive dissonance. Just doesn't seem possible that this becomes this by doing this and while holding it in your own hands should convince you that it's a reality it's somehow just easier to believe that your senses are lying to you but the Huawei Mate X is a very real product that you'll soon be able to buy for a very high price and if it delivers on even half its potential it might just change smartphones as we know them. - Woo! The Mate X promises the same practical benefits as Samsung's Galaxy Fold announced a week earlier. It gives you a one-handed smartphone and a two-handed tablet bundled into one mobile device but where the Galaxy Fold closes around its primary display to protect it the Mate X flips the script. Its display becomes the casing when the phone is closed. In some ways that makes the Mate X more elegant than Samsung's offering.

There's no need for a smaller outer display as there is on the Galaxy Fold because the Mate X is basically all screen when closed. A 6.6-inch display canvas on the front and a 6.4-inch area on the back and because it's an outie instead of an innie like the Samsung the Mate X can collapse into a nearly fully flat package. Now you probably don't need me to tell you the downside. A display like this has to be plastic because the glass doesn't fold. So you've got this super soft skin that'll get scratched up a lot faster than glass and it also means that the surface texture is nowhere near as smooth as glass at least on this early unit. We're still months from an official launch so Huawei has time to work this out but even so perfection seems improbable. Let's talk about how it works. Converting the Mate X from phone to tablet is surprisingly tactile. See you click this button to release a catch which lets a spring pop up one side of the display. Then you sort of peel the phone open like a backwards book.

You can leave it partially folded for fun sizzle photos or to attract a crowd at the bar but most of the time you'll just unfold it all the way until the hinge locks in place with a soft click. Just like that you've got an eight-inch display at a nearly square eight-by-seven aspect ratio and you might think that shape demands two-handed usage but the Mate X has another clever design element. You know how the Amazon Kindle Oasis has that ridge running along its side? There's a grip on the Mate X that reminds me of it and it makes one-handed use much more comfortable. I really didn't expect the Mate X to feel this light in tablet mode just like I didn't expect it to feel as dense as it does when closed. Again it plays with your mind. That grip also contains the Mate X's camera array. While there's the same Leica co-branding as on Huawei's conventional smartphones shooting with this is not conventional. Remember the phone is all screen so when it's closed both photographer and subject can see the shot as it's being composed. There are so many questions left to be answered once I get final hardware.

How flat will the screen ultimately be? How well will Huawei's custom carrying case protect it? How long will the 4500 milliamp-hour battery last? And look as excited as I am there's reason to be skeptical about the early folding phones broadly and this one in particular. You've heard me say it a lot. Huawei's software quality often lags far behind that of its hardware even on smartphones that aren't trying to reinvent the square. Thanks to all those open questions this isn't the place to say whether the Mate X will be worth its stratospheric asking price when it launches in a few months and if you're dubious about the prospects for this phone no one can blame you but what I took away from the first half hour I spent with my first folding phone was a certainty that there's far too much utility far too much fun in these designs for the format to be just a flash in the pan. Foldables are the future and the Huawei Mate x is at the leading edge of that future. That's why I'm excited to review it and why I'm giving it the TlcShoppe Award for Best of MWC 2019. As for whether it'll beat out the competition for Best Foldable of 2019 well only time will tell. I have not been able to go hands-on with the Galaxy Fold so I can't wait to put these head-to-head when I finally can. I hope you'll keep coming back to hear more.

Please subscribe to the TlcShoppe on website so you don't miss the full reviews and my continuing coverage of all things mobile from smartwatches to electric cars. Until next time. From Barcelona thanks for reading and stay mobile my friends.
Huawei Mate X 5G Hands-On: The Folding Phone Is The Future Huawei Mate X 5G Hands-On: The Folding Phone Is The Future Reviewed by Admin on 12:35 PM Rating: 5

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