HiSilicon Kirin 990 vs Kirin 980, HiSilicon Kirin 980 vs Kirin 990
HiSilicon Kirin 990 vs Kirin 980

HiSilicon Kirin 990 vs Kirin 980

In IFA 2019, Huawei unveiled Kirin 990 chipset – the latest chipset of Kirin 900 series. This chipset brings many major improvements over its predecessor Kirin 980. It features an integrated 5G Modem, enhanced gaming and AI performance over the Kirin 980. It comes in 2 variants – 5G & non 5G variant. With improvements, how this processor performs against the Kirin 980? To know about it here we will compare HiSilicon Kirin 990 vs Kirin 980 and trying to find the difference between the Kirin 990 and Kirin 980. If you also have any doubt then read this comparison completely to clear it. Let’s start knowing about them.

AspectsHiSilicon Kirin 990HiSilicon Kirin 980
CPU2 x Cortex-A76@2.86GHz
2 x Cortex-A75@2.36GHz
4 x Cortex-A55@1.95GHz
4 x Cortex-A76@2.60GHz
4 x Cortex-A55@1.80GHz
GPU16 Core Mali-G7610 Core Mali-G76
Manufacturing Process7nm EUV+ (TSMC)7nm (TSMC)
CameraSingle - Up 64MP
Dual - Up 40MP + 24MP
Single - Up 48MP
Dual - Up 40MP + 24MP
RAMLPDDR4X@2133MHz16 Bit 4x LPDDR4X Up to 8GB@2133MHz
StorageUFS 3.0UFS 3.0
NPU(AI)Quad-Core NPU with Da Vinci architectureDual-Core NPU
Modem5G4G LTE
Download - 2.3Gbps
Upload - 1.25Gbps
Download - 1.4Gbps
Upload - 200Mbps
Download - 1.4Gbps
Upload - 200Mbps

Kirin 990 vs Kirin 980 CPU & GPU


First of all, let’s compare their CPU section where both chipsets have a 64-bit octa-core CPU. The CPU of Kirin 990 divides into three groups to its cores – big, middle & little. Its big cores include two ARM Cortex-A76 Cores clocked at 2.86GHz while the middle cores house the same two Cortex-A76 cores with a different speed which is 2.36GHz. At the same time, the little cores include four Cortex-A55 Cores operating at up to 1.95GHz clock speed.

While on the other side, the Kirin 980 divides its CPU cores into two groups – big & little. Its big cores include four Cortex-A76 Cores clocked at 2.6GHz while the little cores have four Cortex-A55 Cores running with a maximum speed of 1.8GHz.

Here in the case of CPU, the newer Kirin 990 has a better CPU because it works with a higher frequency compared to the older Kirin 980. Because of higher frequency, its CPU performance will be better than the Kirin 980.


In the GPU section, the newer Kirin 990 features the Mali-G76 GPU with 16 Cores which is an upgrade over the Kirin 980. Because the Kirin 980 also features the Mali-G76 with 10 Cores. Here the GPU of Kirin 990 has 4 Cores extra using that it offers a smooth gaming experience compared to the Kirin 980. The GPU department is also better at the Kirin 990.


Fabrication Process

Now let’s compare their fabrication process, here the Kirin 980 works on the 7nm (TSMC) process technology while the newer Kirin 990 is fabricated on the 7nm EUV+ (TSMC) which is an upgrade over the process technology of the Kirin 980. It helps the chipset to consume less power. So the newer Kirin 990 is more power-efficient and powerful than the older Kirin 980.

Kirin 990 vs Kirin 980 Artificial Intelligence

In the AI part, the newer Kirin 990 also brings major improvements. Speaking of the older Kirin 980, it was the first chipset coming with a dual-core NPU. The AI performance of this chipset is quite good. It doesn’t let any chipset go ahead in terms of AI. But now we have its successor the Kirin 990 which features a quad-core NPU with improved features. Its NPU is based on Da Vinci architecture. Before it, the Kirin 810 was the chipset with Da Vinci architecture which is a mid-range chipset with great AI performance. Speaking of the power of Da Vinci architecture, with it the Kirin 810 outperforms the Snapdragon 855 and the Helio P90 in terms of AI.

The new Da Vinci Architecture improves performance and efficiency at the same time. The NPU’s big cores work for AI-demanding tasks and little cores for not as intensive AI computation. This NPU also works with its ISP to improve the photography on the Kirin 990 chipset. So overall AI performance of the newer Kirin 990 is much better than the olde Kirin 980.

Kirin 990 vs Kirin 980 Camera, RAM and Storage


The Kirin 990 also features improved ISP over the Kirin 980. It has 5th Gen. ISP which offers a 15% better power efficiency, 30% better Image Noice Reduction, and 20% better Video Noice Reduction. This ISP also has a BM3D feature that offers Image Noice Reduction like DSLR. It is the first time on any smartphone. Using this ISP, the Kirin 990 can handle up to 64MP single camera and dual camera up to 40MP + 24MP.

While on the other side, the Kirin 980 can handle up to 48MP single and dual camera up to 40MP + 24MP. There is only this information available about this SoC.

RAM and Storage

Here the Kirin 990 supports LPDDR4X RAM clocked at 2133MHz while the company hasn’t told about its supportable RAM size. While the Kirin 980 has support for 16 bit Quad-Channel up to 8GB LPDDR4X RAM clocked at 2133MHz.
In the case of storage, both SoCs have support for the UFS3.0 type of storage.

Connectivity Features

The newer Kirin 990 is special because of its connectivity feature. It has support for 5G technology and comes with a built-in 5G modem. On a 5G network, it can provide a maximum downloading speed of 2.3Gbps and 1.25Gbps uploading speed. While on a 4G network it can capture a downloading speed of 1.4Gbps using LTE Cat.21 and 200Mbps uploading speed using LTE Cat.18.

While on the other side, the Kirin 980 has support for 4G and it can provide a maximum downloading speed of 1.4Gbps using LTE Cat.21 and an uploading speed of 200Mbps using LTE Cat.18. Other connectivity features like WiFi, Bluetooth, GPS, FM Radio, etc. are the same in both Kirin 990 and the Kirin 980 chipsets.

Read also :-


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here