The Kirin series of chipsets have consistently proved the engineering brilliance of Huawei, garnering praise from tech professionals and regular users alike across the world. Built with numerous world-first technological breakthroughs, the new Kirin 980 is one of the most highly-anticipated announcements in the industry.
The current Kirin 970 chipset continues to be an incredibly competitive piece of hardware nearly a year on from its release in the market, and the Kirin 980 builds on that success as its foundation. Featuring upgraded AI capabilities, faster performance and improved efficiency, the Kirin 980 aims to deliver a truly next-generation mobile experience.
The Performance Department
All current mobile chipsets use the 10nm process technology – including the Kirin 970 – which integrates 5.5 billion transistors within its structure. The Kirin 980 uses the advanced 7nm process, upping the transistor count to 6.9 billion to boost performance by 20% and power efficiency by 40%. Users can expect their Kirin 980-equipped devices to run apps faster while slashing battery consumption by almost half.
Twice Smarter Than Before
The NPU (Neural Processing Unit) on the Kirin 970 introduced state-of-the-art AI capabilities to aid mostly in mobile photography. The Kirin 980 features a Dual NPU system for a 120% increase in AI-enabled object recognition, making it capable of identifying roughly 4,500 images per minute. With this, next-gen flagship Huawei phones can help users capture better images faster than what is currently on offer.
The Kirin 980 also doubles on the camera’s image signal processor (ISP) from the Kirin 970’s single ISP, enhancing noise reduction capabilities and multi-camera support. Dual-ISP on the Kirin 980 results in sharper, clearer, and more detailed photos.
Eight Cores Revamped and Graphics Improved
Managing tasks with the Kirin 970 are a breeze thanks to the octa-core A73/A53 chips onboard, but the Kirin 980 improves on that as well by opting for a more dynamic setup using the new A76 chips cooperating in tandem with A55 chips. This sees the Kirin 980’s single-core performance exceed the Kirin 970’s by a whopping 75%.
The Kirin 980 also incorporates the Mali G76 GPU (the first mobile chipset in the world to do so) which, boosts performance and efficiency by 46% compared to the Kirin 970’s Mali G72. Graphics-heavy mobile games will have no trouble maintaining smooth and stable framerates thanks to the incredible improvements offered by the Mali G76.
In terms of specific features, the Kirin 980 also supports a unique device unlock system called Bone Voice ID which utilizes voice identification in addition to fingerprint and face unlock. Huawei’s proprietary Supercharge technology also sees a bump in charging speed, capable of charging a 4,200 mAh battery to 70% in 30 minutes.
When it seems unlikely to improve on an already-excellent mobile chip like the 970, the Kirin 980 finds a way to upgrade nearly every feature, with particular focus on faster performance and increased efficiency.