My iPad Pro would be the best tablet ever if Apple borrowed this Huawei pad feature

Huawei MatePad Pro (2022)
(Image credit: Huawei)

While I often consider my iPad Pro a pretty great tablet, it's not perfect - and with Huawei launching a new slate that could hit our list of the best tablets, I'm reminded of a common issue I have with Apple's iPads.

The new tablet is an updated version of the Huawei MatePad Pro called... well, with the same name, but we'll append (2022) so you know that we're talking about the new one.

This new MatePad Pro has an 11-inch screen, like its predecessor, and the big upgrade over the 2021 model is in this display, as it uses OLED tech instead of LCD, and has a 120Hz refresh rate.

The new tablet also has improved speakers, a redesigned rear camera bump, and software that's designed to be better for multi-tasking.

When I was reading the press release on the new Huawei MatePad Pro, I wasn't sure that it was worth reporting on - Huawei hasn't provided a price or release date, or even said whether it'll be available to buy in any regions we cover.

That was until I read about one extra feature that the new MatePad Pro brings, which is something I've been wishing my iPad Pro would do for ages now...

The keyboard is the key

This upgrade is in the keyboard - the Huawei MatePad Pro (2022) supports a new form of keyboard folio, which is basically a type of accessory that functions as a stand, a case and a keyboard all in one.

So far, so similar... but you can also pair it to the slate via Bluetooth so you can continue using it when it's not physically attached. 

Huawei calls this detachable mode, and it works alongside laptop mode (like a traditional keyboard accessory) and studio mode (like Apple's Magic Keyboard) as one of the three 'modes' for the keyboard.

Detachable mode is the real stand-out feature here though, and it's something I wish other slates could do, in particular the iPad Pro that I use all the time.

I can't count the number of times I've tried to awkwardly prop my tablet up on a tiny table on a coach, or in a coffee shop, or even my own (tiny) desk, and struggled to get it to fit due to its large size - this makes typing almost impossible. I've had to contort my arms into incredibly weird positions just to be able to type on long train journeys.

With detachable mode, you could in theory prop the tablet on the small table while you leave the keyboard on your lap to write, or place the slate somewhere other than your accessory in order to easily type. 

This mode would make working when out and about so much easier - even on a desk, or sofa, or bed, it'd give you the versatility to contort yourself into bizarre stretches while you work (people who've written for a long time will know exactly what I mean).

I'd love this kind of feature to come to the iPad Pro - I don't see it happening, since every keyboard Apple releases misses key functionality (I'm looking at you, Magic Keyboard, with your horrible lack of range on the viewing angles), but here's hoping.

Tom Bedford

Tom Bedford was deputy phones editor on TechRadar until late 2022, having worked his way up from staff writer. Though he specialized in phones and tablets, he also took on other tech like electric scooters, smartwatches, fitness, mobile gaming and more. He is based in London, UK and now works for the entertainment site What To Watch.

He graduated in American Literature and Creative Writing from the University of East Anglia. Prior to working on TechRadar, he freelanced in tech, gaming and entertainment, and also spent many years working as a mixologist.