BERLIN: HUAWEI HAS LAUNCHED the Kirin 990 5G, which it's proudly touting as the world's first 7nm 5G SoC.
Launched at IFA just days after Samsung showed off the Exynos 980, an 8nm mobile processor with 5G smarts built-in, the Huawei Kirin 990 is built on the all-new 7nm+ FinFET Plus EUV node by TSMC - the same manufacturing process that will be used by Apple's soon-to-be-launched A13 chip.
Huawei is claiming many firsts with the flagship SoC, which comprises 2 x big Cortex-A76 at 2.86GHz, 2 x middle Cortex-A76 at 2.36GHz and 4 x small Cortex-A55 at 1.95GHz. As well as the first 7nm all-in-one 5G SoC, the Chinese firm is claiming that the Kirin 990 5G is the "most powerful" and "most compact" offering available on the market; it's supposedly 26 per cent smaller than the Snapdragon 855, and 36 per cent smaller than Samsung's last-gen Exynos 9820.
The Kirin 990, thanks to the 7nm+ EUV process, is also more power-efficient than Qualcomm's latest and greatest, according to Huawei; it offers 12 per cent better Big-Core efficiency, and 35 per cent and 15 per cent with the middle and little cores, respectively.
Elsewhere, the 990 5G also packs - you guessed it - the "world's first" 16-core Mali G76 graphics processor, as well as smart cache built in to reduce bandwidth by up to 15 per cent.
In terms of 5G speeds - the Kirin 990 will also be made available in a 4G-only variant - Huawei says the SoC will offer a maximum download speed of 2.3Gbps, and a maximum upload speed of 1.25Gbps. By comparison, the Snapdragon X55 modem can hit up to 7Gbps, but Qualcomm's chip supports the faster mmwave technology that isn't on offer with Huawei's Kirin 990.
Huawei hasn't yet announced when the Kirin 990 will be released, but it'll likely show up inside the potentially Google-less Mate 30 lineup which is being unveiled on 19 September. µ
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