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Huawei's 5nm Kirin launch is delayed as it seeks to get all its orders out of TSMC before an important deadline

Is this the end of Kirin? Maybe. (Source: Huawei)
Is this the end of Kirin? Maybe. (Source: Huawei)
Huawei's mobile platforms have been notable by their absence from IFA 2020. It transpires that the OEM has decided to delay the launch of its Kirin 1000 platform (which is to be the first of its series to be based on a 5 nanometer (nm) architecture), in order to focus on taking delivery of as much of the silicon it is based on before it is blocked from doing so by US restrictions.

The electronics giant Huawei is now reportedly in a race to accept as many orders of 5nm wafers from the Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) as it possibly can before that foundry has no option but to stop trading with the OEM. Its ability to deliver on this contract may determine the fate of upcoming mobile devices such as the Mate 40 series.

Huawei had previously indicated that these phones were to be the first to feature the next-generation Kirin chipsets (reportedly called the Kirin 1000 series) based on the ground-breaking architecture. To that end, the OEM had allegedly booked out TSMC's 5nm production line to the greatest extent possible, in full cognizance of the fact that it had an ever-narrowing window in which to do business with the supplier.

That company now has less than 10 days in which to fulfil these orders, and is reportedly working flat-out to send 5nm-based components to Huawei. However, even with this effort, there are now hints that it may yet not be enough to ensure a future for handsets such as the Mate 40s or their successors.

For example, Huawei, typically a prominent fixture at the yearly IFA tech expo in Berlin, has a relatively reduced presence at the show: it and its second main brand, Honor, have only introduced products along the lines of wearables or notebooks thus far.

Furthermore, the 5nm Kirin SoCs have not been unveiled at the event as planned, thus potentially casting the health of its mobile device division into even deeper doubt.


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> Expert Reviews and News on Laptops, Smartphones and Tech Innovations > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2020 09 > Huawei's 5nm Kirin launch is delayed as it seeks to get all its orders out of TSMC before an important deadline
Deirdre O'Donnell, 2020-09- 6 (Update: 2020-09- 6)