Honor decided to ignore the cancellation of Mobile World Congress, joining parent company Huawei in going ahead with a product launch anyway to unveil a new line of MagicBook laptops, among other things.
Well, I say unveil - as is typical for Honor, this is really just the European launch of a pair of laptops that it launched in China a few months ago, but at least now we know that you will actually be able to buy one of these in the UK if you so fancy.
Anyone who watched Huawei’s earlier press conference will find the MagicBooks even more eerily familiar though - available in 14in and 15in models, these are incredibly similar to the Huawei MateBook D laptops that have also just been given a European release.
Like those, the MagicBooks are mid-range machines (prices will start from €599 when they launch at the end of March) that pack AMD’s Ryzen 5 3500U processor - though in one difference from the Huawei laptops, there’s no Intel option at all here.
Alongside that you’ll get 8GB of RAM and either 256GB or 512GB of storage, a solid set of ports (USB-C, USB-A, a headphone jack, and even HDMI), a 16:9 IPS display, and Huawei’s sneaky little pop-up webcam hidden in the keyboard.
It also shares the absolute weirdest thing about the MateBook D models. In both cases, the smaller 14in laptop includes the larger battery - at 56Wh - with a relatively modest 42Wh cell for the bigger 15in model, even though it has a larger display to power and extra chassis space for the battery. Lord only knows why - though at least they both get the same super-speedy 65W fast charging.
Of course, it's not unusual for Honor and Huawei devices to share some serious similarities, but they're rarely quite so blatant. In terms of specs and features these are essentially identical laptops, and have presumably come off the same factory line - meaning that if you're toying between them there's really nothing to think about beyond which you can find at a better price on the day.
This is Honor though, so it had to do something to hit the ‘youth’ demographic. In this case, it’s blue highlights along the chamfered edges and company logo, a subtle design touch that elevates the otherwise bog-standard grey and silver finish options. Essentially, this is a MateBook D with a flair for the dramatic, and I’m here for it.
If the MagicBooks don’t float your boat, Honor also declared that its View 30 Pro flagship phone will finally be coming to the West soon, along with the 9X Pro and and some new true wireless Magic Earbuds to go with them all.