Earlier this month, Huawei confirmed that it’s willing to sell its 5G Balong 5000 modems but only to Apple. However, more than powering its competitor’s phones with 5G, the Chinese company will now be looking to enable 5G on its own smartphones with the introduction of 5G modems on its upcoming Kirin 985 processor.
The news comes from several media representatives in Taiwan who have confirmed that Huawei will install a 5G modem when its Kirin 985 will hit production. The 5G-enabled chipset will be manufactured using a FlipChip Package-on-Package process and will hit mass production during the third quarter of the year.
The chipset’s design allows transistors to be vertically stacked over another and that, in addition to the Extreme UltraViolet process, allows a 20 percent increase in transistor density. This helps in boosting the Kirin 985’s energy efficiency and performance.
The production of the Kirin 985 is expected to be made by TSMC through its N7 process. Apple will also rely on TSMC’s N7 Pro process to manufacture its upcoming Apple A13 chip. With the availability scheduled for the second half of 2019, we can expect the Kirin 985 to power Huawei’s Mate 30 series which could be released sometime in September/October this year.
This will be the first time in two years since Huawei will be releasing an upgraded version of a flagship chipset. The last time the Chinese company did so was when it launched the Kirin 955 chip as a tiny upgrade over the Kirin 950 SoC which initially powered the Mate 8 smartphone. At the time, the Kirin 955 and Kirin 950 only had a basic difference of clock speeds between each other with every other element being the same.