Chuwi Hi12 review: Fabulous performance from a well-built 12-inch tablet and keyboard

  • Editors' rating
    8.8 Outstanding


  • TF card slot
  • USB 2.0 and 3.0 ports
  • Full Windows 10 experience


  • Limited screen angles with keyboard

I had high expectations of the Chuwi Hi12 12 inch tablet. I reviewed the Chuwi Vi8 tablet a few weeks ago and was very impressed with its performance. The Chuwi Hi12 has exceeded all of my expectations.

The tablet runs Windows 10 with an Intel Cherry Trail Z8300 (an Intel Atom-X5 Z8300). It has a 64 bit Quad Core 1.44 Ghz processor with 14nm technology.

Chuwi Hi12 12 inch tablet and keyboard review: Fabulous performance from a well built tablet and keyboard that can easily replace your PC ZDNet


For graphics processing there is an Intel HD graphic Gen8 500MHz processor - which is more than enough for me to watch videos and use the tablet as my main work machine.

Its dimensions are 11.68 x 7.98 x .0.35 inches (29.66 x 20.27 x 0.89cm). It weighs 1.88 pounds (0.85kg).

There is a 12 inch retina display with 2160 x 1440 resolution and 400 lumens screen brightness. There is 64Gb eMMC ROM and a drive read speed of up to 150MB/s. Memory can be expanded up to 128Gb.

Colours are gold, white and gunmetal grey. There are two cameras; a 5MP back camera and a 2MP camera if you need to take a selfie.

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The Chuwi Hi12 feels solid and sturdy - even at only 0.35 inches thick (0.89cm). There is a power switch and a volume control button on the top of the tablet.

On the left hand edge there are connectors (from bottom to top) for: TF Card, USB 3.0, Micro USB, USB 2.0, micro HDMI and a 3.5m headphone port, all clearly labelled.

The tablet comes with an OTG cable, charger and USB cable in the box. There is a user manual leaflet, written in Chinese and English.

The English on the user manual is poorly written and is hard to understand. It needs to be looked at by a native English speaking copy editor who can adjust the phrases into workable English.

The bottom of the tablet has two sockets and a magnetic connector which connects to an external keyboard (which is not supplied with the tablet but can be purchased separately).

I clicked the keyboard into place which instantly transformed the tablet into a laptop I now want to take everywhere.

Chuwi Hi12 12 inch tablet and keyboard review: Fabulous performance from a well built tablet and keyboard that can easily replace your PC ZDNet


The magnetic docking keyboard has a rotating shaft and touch panel.

It holds the tablet securely and solidly in place.

The hinge is strongly magnetic and can easily pick up metal items placed next to it.

Opening the hinge to its fullest extent raises the back edge of the tablet off the desk and gives a good typing angle.

When I used the tablet and keyboard on the kitchen counter, I found a slight problem with the device.

I found that the screen did not extend far enough back for me to easily see the screen when I was standing up - not a major issue overall.

The keyboard is solidly built, streamlined with keys that makes satisfying clicks when I type.

Chuwi Hi12 12 inch tablet and keyboard review: Fabulous performance from a well built tablet and keyboard that can easily replace your PC ZDNet


It easily keeps up with my fast typing - unlike the keyboards I use with my Microsoft Surface device.

The keyboard weighs 1.64 pounds (746g).

The trackpad is super-responsive - a little too responsive at times - and responds to flick gestures which take some getting used to.

The hinge is solid and sturdy.

The tablet fits onto the trackpad in either direction - with the screen either facing the keyboard like a laptop - or away from the keyboard - like a tablet notebook.

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The tablet came preinstalled with Windows 10. Preinstalled initial languages were Chinese, Russian, Spanish and English (US).

Cortana works well in English (UK) after the language pack has been installed.

I get about four hours playing video and about five hours when working on office documents.

Docking and undocking the keyboard is fast and the tablet is responsive immediately after undocking.

The keyboard works immediately the tablet is docked.

I have been using this tablet as my main PC for over a week.

I have not missed my laptop at all, and I have managed to do everything that I want to do using the tablet and keyboard together and separately.

The keyboard is what sets this tablet apart from others. Designed for the Hi12, it feels like it should be there. There is no lag, like there is on some other Bluetooth keyboards. This is performant and responsive.

The Chuwi tablet and keyboard accessory are a delight to use. Buy the keyboard to go with the tablet and you could easily throw away your laptop.

This device could replace your current pc and give you the performance you need whilst in the office - or out on the road.

It is a great buy for the road warrior who needs performance and practicality in a low cost, light device. I love it. My Microsoft Surface can stay in the drawer for now.