Huawei Adopts First 10nm Processor, New Kirin 970 to be Supplied by TSMC

25 Nov

According to internal sources, Huawei started to develop next gen Kirin 970 mobile processor on the heels of Kirin 960’s release, reported Chinese media.

The processor is to be Huawei’s first one that incorporates 10 nm chip, which will be supplied by leading Taiwanese semiconductor foundry and is estimated to be introduced to the market prior to the end of 2017.

As the company’s competitor Qualcomm launched its latest Snapdragon 835, which incorporates Samsung’s up-to-date 10nm FinFET process and MediaTek’s Helio X30 chipset, Huawei is to debut its 10nm processor which is supplied by SMC. Although Huawei is a bit late on the release, the company’s mobile processor development is closely following Qualcomm and MediaTek.

Huawei’s debut of 10nm processor also symbolizes the emergence of 10nm process in mobile processor. Samsung tapped into the 10nm process the earliest while TSMC witnessed stable growth as it supply to Apple, MediaTek and Huawei. Scheduled to be released by 1Q17, the first 10nm process chipset is MediaTek’s Helio X30. As for Intel, the company won’t start trial production of 10nm process until 3Q17.

Huawei’s latest Kirin 970 processor is to adopt the same octa-core CPU of Qualcomm’s Sanpdragon 835, including 4 ARM Cortex-A73 cores and 4 ARM Cortex-A53 cores with support for Cat.12 global LTE. Currently, Huawei’s latest product is a successor of Kirin 960’s 16nm process. The heat issue that leads to underclocking will be resolved with 10nm processor while reducing energy consumption for longer battery life. Kirin 970 is expected to be utilized in Huawei’s latest Mate range approximately at the end of 2017.