Huawei: ARM does not drop the firm, the Kirin SoCs are not dead

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ARM is not giving up on Huawei. The British holding company ensures that the design of its hearts and its architectures escape the restrictions imposed by Donald Trump last May. The Chinese manufacturer is therefore free to design the next generation of Kirin SoC based on ARM technologies. 

In May 2019, ARM was forced to surprise its relations with Huawei following the decree promulgated by Donald Trump . This law effectively prohibits a list of Chinese companies from using American technology. Fearing that its licenses are based on more than 25% on technologies coming from the United States, ARM preferred to end its collaboration with the Chinese group … until recently.

Huawei: ARM will continue to collaborate with HiSilicon

The British holding company now claims that the design of its hearts and its architectures are essentially based on British technologies , report our colleagues from Reuters this Friday, October 25, 2019. “Versions 8 and 9 of ARM architectures are technologies of British origin” announces a spokesperson for ARM.

ARM can supply HiSilicon (Editor’s note: Huawei subsidiary) with the ARM v8-A architecture, as well as the new generation of this architecture, following an in-depth examination of the two architectures, all of which were deemed to be original British ” specifies the spokesperson. ARM licenses, although partly developed in Austin, Texas and San Jose, California, do not exceed the 25% maximum rate set by the Trump administration.

“After evaluating Arm’s products and the partnership with Huawei, Arm concluded that the patents on which its main chip design architectures are based are based on technologies originating from the United Kingdom and are therefore not affected by the measures taken by the United States. “ ARM already stated a few weeks ago during a meeting with Huawei officials in Schenzen (China).

In his interview with Reuters, the spokesperson is a little more measured. “Arm is actively communicating with the heads of the department regarding our collaboration with our partner HiSilicon, and we are convinced that we respect the parameters of these directives” tempers the manager. For the moment, ARM does not seem able to affirm that all of its future architectures can escape American restrictions. However, the collaboration between ARM and HiSilicon seems to be going well for the long term.

Huawei is free to design the Kirin Mate 40 SoC with ARM

However, Huawei is currently free to develop its Kirin SoCs based on the designs and architectures provided by ARM. The latest news is that ARM and Huawei are currently working on the successor to the Kirin 990 of the Mate 30 . Expected in September 2020, this system on chip would be engraved in 5nm by TSMC, the Taiwanese founder. The SoC would be based on an architecture based on ARM Cortex-A77 cores. Unsurprisingly, it will enter the market with the Huawei Mate 40 and Mate 40 Pro .

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