What happened: Huawei’s new 7nm System on a Chip (SoC), the Kirin 810, outperformed Qualcomm’s competing Snapdragon 730 and 855 processors in an artificial intelligence (AI) benchmark test and one run by the Antutu benchmarking software. The chip powers Huawei’s newly announced Nova 5 smartphone, and boasts 64% higher transistor density and 28% higher power efficiency than a 10nm processor. While Huawei has positioned the Kirin 810 as a solid processor for its mid-range handsets, the chip also managed to outperform the flagship Kirin 980 in the AI benchmark test.
Why it’s important: According to Synced, the Kirin 810’s new embedded neural processing unit (NPU), built on Huawei’s Da Vinci architecture, will be of interest to the machine learning community for its ability to more efficiently work with FP16 and INT8 data types. Additionally, Huawei’s significant gain on Qualcomm in mobile computing power should put the chip maker on notice that the Chinese tech giant’s own HiSilicon-developed processors can compete with the world’s fastest. It is possible that the Kirin 810 will be Huawei’s last ARM-designed chip, however, after the two companies cut ties in May.