Huawei MateBook 13 and MediaPad M5 Lite debut in the US at CES 2019

The company brings its latest ultraportable laptop and kid-friendly tablets to the US.

Lori Grunin Senior Editor / Advice
I've been reviewing hardware and software, devising testing methodology and handed out buying advice for what seems like forever; I'm currently absorbed by computers and gaming hardware, but previously spent many years concentrating on cameras. I've also volunteered with a cat rescue for over 15 years doing adoptions, designing marketing materials, managing volunteers and, of course, photographing cats.
Expertise Photography | PCs and laptops | Gaming and gaming accessories
Lori Grunin
2 min read

The MediaPad M5 Lite.

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Huawei may be known for its cutting-edge phones, but it makes some nice little laptops (like the MateBook X Pro) and tablets , too. At CES 2019, the company introduced two models to the US: the midrange MateBook 13 13-inch ultraportable and the MediaPad M5 Lite tablet that's got some... interesting kid-focused parental controls.

The "lite" aspect of the new family-friendly MediaPad refers to the lower-resolution, slightly smaller 10.1-inch 1080p screen, less powerful processor and the bundled M-Pen Lite stylus which offers 2,048-levels of pressure compared to the regular M5's 4,096. It will also have a slightly lighter price of $299 when it ships at the end of January.


Before (right) and after (left) Princess Butterfingers got her hands on the MediaPad M5 Lite.

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It offers the usual parental time limit controls and a dedicated "Kids Corner" interface, but also introduces some novel behavior-focused controls as well. It can detect when the tablet is too close to a face, the ambient light is below a certain threshold or if the tablet's being used at an "unhealthy" angle, such as overhead. It will then pop up a little warning animation in the corner, which expands to the entire screen if not heeded. 

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"Hey there! Sit up to keep playing!" The warning messages which take over the screen are going to get old really fast.

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And it's not very durable for kids -- I accidentally dropped it thanks to my toddler-level coordination and ended up damaging the corner and headphone jack.

Watch this: Huawei MediaPad M5 Lite tablet brings novel parental controls to the US

As for the MateBook 13, it's more or less a reworked MateBook X: aluminum unibody construction with a matte sandblasted finish, 2,160x1,440 touchscreen with 100 percent sRGB gamut coverage, and a measly two USB-C ports for connections. And the updated logo, of course.

It incorporates the latest Intel Core i5 or i7 U series processors, and the higher-end i7 model comes equipped with the higher-power version of the Nvidia MX150 graphics processor.

The MateBook 13 will be available at the end of January starting at $1,000 with integrated graphics and $1,300 for the model with discrete.

Huawei debuts MateBook 13 and MediaPad M5 Lite at CES 2019

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Because of the discrete graphics option, the MateBook 13 isn't fanless like the X models, which makes it thicker, and it scales back to two speakers from four.

It will come in Space Gray for a Core i7 or silver for a Core i5 with prices starting at just under $1,000.

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