Huawei: Apple at disadvantage with Kirin 970 smartphone chip arriving soon

Huawei, the world’s 3rd largest smartphone maker, has shared some details about its newest smartphone chip, and the company says it will help its upcoming Mate 10 smartphone outperform Apple and Samsung devices.

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Reported by Reuters, Huawei’s latest in-house designed chip is the Kirin 970. While it won’t be in any device until Huawei launches it’s Mate 10 and Mate 10 Pro smartphones on October 16, the company says the new chip will give it an edge over Apple and others.

“Compared with Samsung and Apple, we have advantages,” Yu said in an interview during the annual IFA consumer electronics fair in Berlin. “Users are in for much faster (feature) performance, longer battery life and more compact design.”

While Yu didn’t reference any specific devices, presumably he’s talking about Apple’s upcoming iPhone 8/Edition and Samsung’s latest Galaxy Note 8 and S8 devices. The most impressive claim is that the new chip will “preserve battery life on phones by up to 50 percent.”

Huawei describes the new chip as the first Neural Processing Unit (NPU) for smartphones. It brings together classic computing, graphics, image and digital signal processing power that have typically required separate chips, taking up more space and slowing interaction between features within phones.

While the new chip may help set Huawei’s devices apart from other Android smartphones that mostly stick with Qualcomm’s Snapdragon processors, it will be unlikely for the new Mate 10 with Kirin 960 to outperform Apple’s upcoming iPhone 8/Edition. With its latest custom A11 chipset and the fine tuning that Apple can do (and others can’t) with its software and hardware, it’s likely Huawei is trying to drum up some good press before Apple’s iPhone event takes the spotlight.

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Avatar for Michael Potuck Michael Potuck

Michael is an editor for 9to5Mac. Since joining in 2016 he has written more than 3,000 articles including breaking news, reviews, and detailed comparisons and tutorials.