Huawei’s kirin 940 and kirin 950 SoC specs emerge

by Joel 2

Ever since the news about a possible Huawei made Nexus made the headlines, the company’s Hisilicon Kirin processors have suddenly entered into the spotlight. Before this news, not many cared about Huawei’s processors, but since it could make it to the next Nexus, everyone wants to know the true capability of its Kirin processor lineup.

kirin processors
This year, the company is expected to announce the upgrade to the Kirin 930, possibly Kirin 940 and Kirin 950 SoCs. However, as of now, we only know details about the existing Kirin 930. The processor is based on four Cortex A53 cores and four Cortex A57 cores clocked up to 2.0GHz. It comes with ARM’s Mali T628 GPU and dual-channel LPDDR3 RAM.





Quad A53 + Quad A57 (up to 2.0GHz) Quad A53 + Quad A72 (up to 2.2GHz) Quad A53 + Quad A72 (up to 2.4GHz)


Dual-channel LPDDR3 Dual-channel LPDDR4 (25.6GB/s) Dual-channel LPDDR4 (25.6GB/s)


ARM Mali T628 GPU ARM Mali T860 GPU ARM Mali T880 GPU


Tensilica HiFi 3 DSP Tensilica HiFi 4 DSP Tensilica HiFi 4 DSP


32MP ISP Dual ISP (32MP) Dual ISP (42MP)

Video Encode

1080p 4K 4K


Dual SIM Cat. 6 LTE Dual SIM Cat. 7 LTE (Dual-SIM) LTE Cat.10

Sensor Hub

i3 Co-Processor (Sensor Hub) i7 Co-Processor (Sensor Hub + Connectivity + Security) i7 Co-Processor (Sensor Hub + Connectivity + Security)

External Component Interfaces

eMMC 4.51 / SD 3.0 (UHS-I)
BT 4.0 Low Energy
Dual-band a/b/g/n Wi-Fi
USB 2.0
UFS 2.0 / eMMC 5.1 / SD 4.1 (UHS-II)
MU-MIMO ac Wi-Fi
BT 4.2 Smart
USB 3.0
UFS 2.0 / eMMC 5.1 / SD 4.1 (UHS-II)
MU-MIMO ac Wi-Fi
BT 4.2 Smart
USB 3.0


Q2 2015 Q3 2015 Q4 2015


The SoC has a built in Tensilica HiFi 3 DSP and an ISP which supports sensors up to 32MP. Like the Kirin 925, the new Kirin 930 too features the i3 co-processor. Other features include support for LTE Cat.6, Bluetooth 4.0 LE, Dual Band Wi-Fi, USB 2.0. The processor was expected to hit the markets by Q2 2015 and will most likely end up on the upcoming Huawei P8 flagship.

Luckily, we have some details about the upcoming Kirin 940 and 950 processors too. Our source tells us that the Kirin 940 which is expected to be announced by Q3 2015 will feature four Cortex A53 and four Cortex A72 cores clocked up to 2.2GHz. If you remember, the Cortex A72 is the latest launch from ARM which is very powerful yet power efficient. The GPU will be upgraded to Mali T860 and it will support dual-channel LPDDR4 RAM. The HiFi DSP gets upgraded to Tensilica HiFi 4 and the processor will have dual ISP which supports up to 32MP sensor. Kirin 940 is expected to bring native 10bit 4K Main 10 HEVC VP9 Encoding and Decoding. It will feature the new i7 co-processor and will support dual SIM cards with LTE Cat. 7 connectivity. The processor will support the new MU-MIMO Wi-Fi ac standard, Bluetooth 4.2 Smart, NFC and USB 3.0.

Unlike the Kirin 940 which is expected to be a big upgrade to the Kirin 930, the Kirin 950 will only have slight modifications. Our source tells us that the SoC will use the same Cortex A53 + Cortex A72 combination but will bump up the clock speed to 2.4GHz. Other important upgrades include a newer Mali T880 GPU, support for Cat. 10 LTE networks and Dual ISPs which now support up to 42MP sensors. Most of the remaining specs of the processor are expected to be the same as the Kirin 940.

Remember that this news comes via a new source, so it may happen that some of the details of the upcoming SoCs turn out different. Hence, make sure that you take this news with a pinch of salt. Still it looks like Huawei is all set to strengthen its processor lineup this year with faster and power efficient chips.

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