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Huawei & SMIC used US tech to make 7nm SoC

According to a report from Bloomberg, Huawei and SMIC used US tech in order to make its 7nm processor. The chip in question is the Kirin 9000S which fuels the company’s flagship Mate 60 series of phones. Well, amongst some other devices.

That chip was manufactured last year, and Bloomberg reports that SMIC used technology from California Applied Materials Inc. and Lam Research Corp in order to make this chip a reality.

Huawei & SMIC used US tech to make a 7nm SoC, but they did not break any rules while doing so

Before you jump to conclusions, though, do note that the tech (in this case US machinery) was obtained before the US banned such sales to China. That happened in October 2022, in case you don’t remember. So, technically, SMIC and Huawei did nothing against the rules.

Reuters noted that the White House Commerce Department, Huawei, Applied Materials, Lam Research, and SMIC did not immediately respond to its request for a comment.

The US continues its plan to deprive SMIC and Huawei from access to its advanced tech. The Kirin 9000S is not exactly on par with the latest flagship SoCs, but it’s good enough for Huawei to use it in its flagships, it seems.

The Kirin 9000S is a 7nm chip, and a new processor is coming this year

As a reminder, we’re seeing 3nm and 4nm processors these days, while the Kirin 9000S is a 7nm chip. Huawei is tipped to release a new Kirin processor this year, one that will be on par with the Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1.

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So, even that chip won’t be in line with the latest and greatest. The Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 is still a great chip, so… that will probably be enough for Huawei. The main benefit of the fact Huawei has its own chips is that it can offer 5G connectivity. That is something it was prevented from doing for years.

As a reminder, the US added Huawei to a trade restrictions list back in 2019. SMIC joined Huawei in 2020. Both companies denied wrongdoing, but that did not affect the decision the US made.

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John Smith

My John Smith is a seasoned technology writer with a passion for unraveling the complexities of the digital world. With a background in computer science and a keen interest in emerging trends, John has become a sought-after voice in translating intricate technological concepts into accessible and engaging articles.

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