Huawei's New Folding Phone Is Lighter Than an iPhone 14 Pro Max

The Mate X3, Huawei's latest book-style foldable, was just unveiled in China.

Sareena Dayaram Senior Editor
Sareena is a senior editor for CNET covering the mobile beat including device reviews. She is a seasoned multimedia journalist with more than a decade's worth of experience producing stories for television and digital publications across Asia's financial capitals including Singapore, Hong Kong, and Mumbai. Prior to CNET, Sareena worked at CNN as a news writer and Reuters as a producer.
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Sareena Dayaram
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Huawei's newest foldable phone, the Mate X3, is an impressively thin and light book-style foldable phone. It was unveiled Thursday alongside the non-foldable flagship P60 series in China.

The Mate X3 has a 6.4-inch cover screen that unfolds to make way for a 7.85-inch inner screen. Despite the presence of two screens, the Mate X3 weighs 239 grams (8.4 ounces) and is 5.3 millimeters thick, making it lighter than the iPhone 14 Pro Max and thinner when unfolded. This also means the Mate X3 is the lightest commercially available foldable phone -- a title Huawei clinched previously with the Mate XS 2. For reference, the Galaxy Z Fold 4, Samsung's version of this type of foldable, weighs 263 grams and has a width of 6.3mm when unfolded.


Huawei compares the Mate X3 with Apple's iPhone 14 Pro Max.


The Mate X3 also has a free-stop hinge, the company says, allowing the phone to fold into a variety of positions, which lends the device to Flex-mode style features seen on Samsung foldables. The Mate X3 features a circular camera bump housing a 50-megapixel main camera, a 13-megapixel ultrawide camera and a 12-megapixel periscope-style telephoto camera, which is capable of 5x optical zoom. 

Although the slick hardware of the Mate X3 is commendable, one of the biggest upgrades to the Mate X3 is the IPX8 rating, which remains uncommon in the foldable phone segment. Only Samsung's Galaxy Z Fold 4 series has the same rating, which means the means the device can withstand immersion in over 1 meter (3.2 feet) of water. 

camera bump

The camera bump of the Mate X3


Another notable addition is satellite connectivity, which Huawei says can both send and receive messages. The iPhone 14 series was the first major smartphone lineup to permit users to send emergency texts using satellites when outside the range of their mobile network. 

Read more: iPhone-Like Emergency Texts via Satellite Coming to Android in 2023

With the Mate X3, Huawei has marked its return to the book-style foldable. Last year, Huawei ran with the single-screen wraparound design of the Mate XS 2 instead of launching a successor to 2021's Mate X2. The return to inward-folding design, which Samsung first introduced, seems to indicate that book-style designs are the future for Huawei foldable phones. 

The Mate X3 starts at 12,999 yuan (approximately $1,895, £1,550 or AU$2,850) for the base 256GB variant. An international launch is pegged for May.