The OLED MatePad Pro tablet is Huawei's cheap iPad Pro alternative

The 12.6-inch OLED MatePad Pro tablet is Huawei's answer to the iPad Pro
(Image credit: Huawei)

Huawei has launched its first HarmonyOS tablet. The 12.6-inch MatePad Pro, which looks to be an affordable alternative to the Apple iPad Pro, boasts an OLED display with HDR10 support and is available with Huawei's M-Pencil stylus.

Perhaps the most notable thing about the new MatePad Pro is that it eschews Android and Google Play in favour of Huawei's own HarmonyOS and AppGallery store. The switch is down to the fact that phones and tablets sold in China can no longer be sold with Google services and apps pre-installed. Which is a tiny bit of a problem for China-based Huawei which, as of April 2020, had captured almost half the Chinese tablet market. 

Politics aside, the 12.6-inch slate should have plenty of oomph thanks to HiSilicon's Kirin 9000E chipset and optional 5G support. There's also a 13MP triple camera to the rear and no less than eight speakers, so you'd hope it shoots decent video and sounds reasonable. There are some neat features, too, such as the ability to view four (supported) apps on the screen at once in split-screen multitasking mode.

Huawei says it has managed to pack in a 10,050 mAh battery that deliver 14 hours of video playback from a single charge. Sounds impressive. The tablet can wirelessly charge at speeds of up to 27W, and fast-charged at up to 40W with a compatible cable. For comparison, the 12.9-inch iPad Pro has a 9720 mAh battery but Apple is said to be working on an iPad Pro with wireless charging, due in 2022.

Huawei unveiled the 12.6-inch MatePro alongside a cheaper 11-inch model with an LCD display, and a new M-Pencil. The stylus boasts a fancy "platinum coated" nib, offers up to 10 hours of battery and charges on the side of the MatePro.

The 12.6-inch MatePad Pro will sell for €799 (around £700, $1000, AU$1300) in Europe, while the MatePad 11 will be available from €399. The M Pencil will set you back €99 (around £90, $120, AU$160). 

There's no word on when the tablets will be available in the UK but Huawei has promised to share further details soon.


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