Extended hands on with Huawei Mediapad M3 Lite Tablet

Extended hands on with Huawei Mediapad M3 Lite Tablet

Nov 16, 2017

The Android tablet scene is far from sparse. There are several vendors, exponentially more options, and consumer is king.

As such, it’s tough for manufacturers to make a name for themselves. Huawei has come quite far from those heady days when it had to teach people how to pronounce its name; indeed, Huawei can arguably claim to be one of the more prominent Android OEMs.

Such recognition can be a double-edged sword, what with affordable options like the recently released Mediapad M3 Lite. We definitely looked to give it a major workout.

The review retail box contained the tablet, charging pieces, paperwork and eject pin. Then, it’s off to charge.

Now, if the screen should be considered the jump-off point, the M3L definitely makes a great impression. Right upon initial boot, the vivid 1920 x 1200 pixel 8-inch screen smiles in greeting. It does like smudges though.

Just beyond the screen, you do get a sharp white frame, with space up top for an 8MP fixed focus front-facing camera, while a deceptive home button resides at the bottom. Around the frame, there are the requisite ports: audio input, micro-HDMI charging, microphone and speakers. The volume rocker and power buttons reside on the right, while there is a prominent 8MP auto-focus snapper. If you blink, you might miss the microSD card expansion slot. All this packed into a 8.4 x 4.9 x 0.3 inch frame that comes in at under 11 ounces.

m3

Altogether, the white finish with silver accents worked well on our review unit (and we hear it can be had in grey and gold too).

We proceeded to setup… the M3L does its thing snappily; under the hood, it packs a familiar Qualcomm Snapdragon octa-core processor. A quick run through reveals the standard stuff: bluetooth and GPS, plus 3 GB RAM, 16 GB memory and a 4800 mAh battery.

But back to performance. Basic operations like browsing, listening to music and running social networking apps didn’t cause any noticeable slowdowns. I did wish it had more onboard memory, especially with all the stock (Facebook, Amazon, Lyft, etc) apps it has. The iteration of EMUI is a nice, relatively thin-feeling overlay, and the fingerprint reader is a great latent touch, in that you might get fooled by the placement on the “home” button.

And the camera… well, check it out:

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Whines? One’s man’s must-have is another’s man app bloat. I wish I could remove — completely — apps that I don’t want. Which brings me to another nitpick: 16GB isn’t a lot for wanna be app hoarders.

The M3L does well to make you feel like you are getting a good deal for relatively little. It doesn’t really compete well with its big brother, but I hazard that its biggest positive is that it really isn’t supposed to.

Tre Lawrence
Tech fiend that isn't too cool for ramen noodles...
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