At MWC 2015, Huawei is launching its MediaPad X2 tablet/phone, which is a direct descendant of the MediaPad X1 which was pretty popular in China. When I discussed about that X1 model in Shanghai (at Huawei HQ), I’ve been told that it has a loyal following of users who like using a 7-inch phone (oftentimes with a Bluetooth headset), but that this usage model isn’t as popular in the west where people have historically been reluctant to use such a large device as a phone (I remember people mocking the original Galaxy Note as well, only to be proven wrong a couple of years later).
The MediaPad X2 builds on the same foundation, but is designed to push the concept further with a better Kirin 930 processor, which is the main upgrade for this second-generation MediaPad X. The Kirin series is designed by hiSilicon, a subsidiary of Huawei. This updated design has 8 CPU cores (ARM A53 core design) and an ARM Mali T628 graphics processor (GPU), which places it in a mid-range “plus” performance category.
The MediaPad X2 should be able to handle games decently, but won’t be able to compete in performance with high-end devices priced in the $650+ range (not surprising). On the other hand, it should be just as good for handling multimedia videos — but its 1080p screen has 2 to 3 times less pixels than other high-end phones.
The rest of the X2 is very similar to the original X1 design: the body looks nearly the same, and the battery capacity stands at 5000 mAh (12 hours of video, according to Huawei).
Finally, the software has been upgraded and The X2 will ship with Android 5.x aka Lollipop. The Huawei MediaPad X2 reinforces the original concept, but won’t otherwise convinced others to jump on board if they haven’t before. It’s typical for extreme devices like these that cater to a somewhat hyper-specialized user base. That said, even if you don’t own once, it’s fair to recognize that it serves that 7” phone crowd quite well.