The chipset is the world's first commercial SoC manufactured with TSMC's 7nm process and will be used in Huawei's next-generation smartphones.
Moving towards the Kirin 980's third core cluster, the processor utilizes four of ARM's Cortex A55's cores that are clocked at 1.80GHz. "Equipped with all-new CPU, GPU and Dual NPU, the Kirin 980 is the ultimate engine to power the next-generation productivity and entertainment applications", Huawei Consumer Business Group CEO, Richard Yu said while announcing the Kirin 980 at IFA 2018. Kirin 980 is the hardware that will be inside the forthcoming Mate 20 due in October as well as the P20 and P20 Pro replacement due early next year which we reckon will be called the P30 and P30 Pro. Huawei, on the other hand, announced the world's first 7nm Kirin 980 AI mobile chipset, Amazon Alexa-powered AI Cube smart speaker that is also a 4G router.
Huawei's flagship Mate 20 and Mate 20 Pro are tipped to launch in October, but the Chinese firm has made a decision to get ahead of itself with the introduction of the entry-level Mate 20 Lite.
But a bit about the Kirin 980 first. Huawei projects that it will improve on that of the Kirin 970 by up to 134%. while using 88% less power. According to Huawei's testing, the Kirin 980 tallied an average frame rate of 59.3 FPS compare to 48.5 FPS for the Snapdragon 845. The smartphone is expected to be powered by company's mid segment Kirin 710 processor. This means a faster phone with better battery life, but also quicker app launch times, better multi-tasking and a generally smoother user experience. The GPU will also use Huawei's GPU Turbo technology which can boost the GPU clock under heavy load, providing better gaming performance, Huawei claimed.
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The Kirin 980 also has a new ISP with a 46% increase in performance over last year's model. The Kirin 980 can apparently recognise up to 4,600 images per minute, which is up 120 per cent compared to Kirin 970.
While the P20 Pro came with front-facing physical home with an integrated fingerprint sensor, the Mate 20 Pro might feature an in-display fingerprint sensor.
In regards to connectivity, the 980 has the world's first modem supporting LTE Cat.21, which has a peak download speed of 1.4Gbps.