Review unit provided by Huawei Singapore
The Huawei MatePad 10.4 (2022) is an entry to mid-range tablet with pen support. Note that there’s an earlier model from 2020 which comes with Kirin 810 processor.
The few models the respective prices in Singapore are:
- 4GB RAM, 64GB storage, WIFI – SGD 328 (lowest seen: SGD 268)
- 4GB RAM, 128GB storage, WIFI – SGD 448 (comes with keyboard case)
- 4GB RAM, 128GB storage, LTE – SGD 548 (comes with keyboard case)
The review unit I have comes with the Kirin 710A chip (4 cores Cortex-A73 at 2000 MHz and 4 cores Cortex-A53 at 1700 MHz) and Mali G51 CPU. Model number is BAH4-W09.
The retail unit in Singapore is advertised with Kirin 820 (1 core Cortex-A76 at 2360 MHz, 3 cores Cortex-A76 at 2220 MHz, and 4 cores Cortex-A55 at 1840 MH) and Mali-G57 GPU instead. Model number is BAH3-W09.
Kirin 820 has better performance than Kirin 710A. If prices are the same, obvious get the tablet with Kirin 820. So my review may not be indicative of the actual performance of retail unit. And this is not my usual artist review because I’m missing an important accessory that’s need for the pen to work with the tablet. More on that later.
There used to be an early bird bundle that includes Huawei M Pencil 2 but that bundle is no longer available. These are the prices I found on Shopee SG for the M Pencil 2:
- M Pencil 2 + 1 nib – SGD 119
- M Pencil 2 + charger + 1 nib – SGD 129
- M Pencil 2 + charger + 4 nibs – SGD 149
- M Pencil 2 charger – $38
These are the items included in the box:
- Type-C to 3.5 mm audio adapter cable
- Type-C cable
- Eject pin
- Quick Start Guide
- Warranty card
The Huawei MatePad 10.4 is a beautiful tablet with solid build quality. The tablet is 7.45mm thin and relatively lightweight at 460g.
Bezels are thin and uniform. Corners are rounded off. Sides are curved slightly. This is a tablet that feels very comfortable in hand.
Resolution is 2000 x 1200 and on a 10.4-inch display pixelation isn’t that noticeable so all the visuals look quite sharp.
The display is an IPS LCD with colour support is up to 16.7 million colours. Colours and contrast on the display look great out of the box. Brightness is up to 470 nits (real life is probably slightly under 400 nits).
The display is laminated so there’s no gap between the glass surface and LCD beneath. Frame rate is 60Hz.
The USB-C port only has USB 2 speeds. With the included 33W charger, the tablet can be charged to 100% in an hour. Battery life is really good at 10-14 hours (usually longer unless you’re gaming).
The 4-way speakers are loud, clear and sound great.
The front and back camera is 8MP each. Photo resolution is up to 3264 x 2448 pixels and videos are 1080P.
The tablet has a micro SD card slot. Because of this, you can save some money by getting the SGD 328 base model with 64GB storage and add a 256GB Sandisk micro SD card for $45.
Note that prior to installing any apps, the OS and pre-installed apps already take up 15GB of internal storage.
The default app store is Huawei AppGallery. The selection of Chinese apps is huge. English apps are limited in numbers and many popular ones are not available, e.g. Google apps, Facebook, Instagram.
There’s no Google Play Store on the tablet but it’s possible to install Google Play Store and the process is easy.
To install Google Play Store, you just need to install the Gspace app that’s available from Huawei AppGallery. After you have Gspace installed, you’ll have Google Play Store and access to all the apps within. Gspace is ad supported so I recommend you buy the full version to remove irritating apps.
Purchases will work with Gspace Google Play Store (GGPS). All your past purchases will be restored as well. Notifications from Gmail, Facebook, etc will work.
The downside is these GGPS installed apps will not appear under the settings of Huawei Harmony OS so you can’t tweak the permissions or notifications from settings, you have to tweak from within the apps.
Another downside is certain apps will take a split second before they launch. But after the apps launched, performance is smooth.
Note that my review unit has the Kirin 710G instead of the 820 that’s supposed to be in retail units.
Overall performance of the tablet is smooth with non-gaming usage. Apps launch fast enough and multi-tasking works fine until you have too many apps open and that’s where the tablet will feel sluggish. This tablet is good for light to medium usage and media consumption.
The main area where you may find performance lacking is with gaming. Running Genshin Impact with low resolution and low graphics settings still result in choppy gameplay animation. Games that are less graphics intensive will obviously run smoother.
Another area where you may notice lag or latency is with launching of apps installed via Gspace Google Play Store. But once those apps are open, performance is smooth.
Huawei Super Device
I use the tablet often as a wireless external display with my Huawei laptop. If you use a laptop from another company, you can use SuperDisplay app from Google Play Store for the same external display functionality.
Other useful features are direct wireless file transfer, and the ability to open your tablet folders from Windows Explorer on your computer.
Huawei MatePad 10.4 (2022) supports M Pencil 2 but to get that pen to pair with the tablet you’ll need a separate adapter.
M Pencil 2 does not attach to the side of the tablet for charging and Bluetooth pairing.
If you want to use the pen, make sure you buy the M Pencil 2 Package which comes with the pen and adapter for charging and Bluetooth pairing. Without that adapter the pen cannot be used with the tablet.
I’ll update this review with the drawing performance when I have the stylus charger.
Anyway, the drawing performance should be similar to MatePad 11 (2021) and MatePad Pro 10.8 (2021)
The Huawei MatePad 10.4 (2022) is a good looking tablet with decent performance given the mid-range specs.
I used to have reservations for Huawei tablets due to the lack of Google Play Store. It’s now possible to install Google Play Store using the Gspace app found in the Huawei AppGallery. So now you can have access to all apps from Google Play Store as well as Huawei AppGallery. If you have purchased apps from Google Play Store, all purchases can be restored.
So the main limitation for this tablet now is the Kirin 710A chip is not powerful enough to provide smooth gaming performance with graphics intensive games. Unfortunately I do not have access to the model with Kirin 820 so I can’t say much about gaming with that tablet.
If you feel like you need more processing power, there’s the MatePad Pro 10.8 (2021) and 12.4, and MatePad 11 (2021). But those tablets are more expensive.
If you’re looking for an affordable tablet for non-gaming usage, this tablet is worth considering. In terms of value for money, if you don’t need the keyboard case and pen, the base model with 4GB RAM and 64GB storage (with micro SD card slot) at SGD 328 is quite reasonable — lowest price I’ve see is SGD 268. Just for comparison purposes, the Apple iPad 9 (2021) (4GB 64GB) is SGD 329 and Samsung Tab S6 Lite 2022 (4GB 128GB, S Pen included) is SGD 548.
If you need to type, get the keyboard case bundle.
Pros and cons at a glance
+ Beautiful design
+ Compact and lightweight (460g)
+ Solid build quality
+ Smooth performance overall
+ Bright and colourful display
+ Laminated display
+ 4-way speakers have good audio quality
+ M-Pencil drawing and write performance quite good
+ M-Pencil supports tilt and 4096 levels pressure sensitivity
+ Palm rejection works well
+ 10 to 14 hours battery life
+ Micro SD card slot available
+ Google Play Store can be installed easily
+ Huawei Share collaborative features with other Huawei devices
– Gaming performance choppy with graphics intensive games
– No headphone jack