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Kunpeng 920: Huawei Unveils World’s Highest-Performance ARM-based CPU

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Just in time for CES 2019, Chinese tech leader Huawei, strategically unveiled the Kunpeng 920, the industry’s highest-performing ARM-based processor. At Huawei’s headquarters in Shenzhen, China, Huawei released the impressive CPU, intended for handling applications like big data processing and distributed storage.

William Xu, Director of Huawei’s Board and Chief Strategy Marketing Officer, said during the press conference that “Huawei has continuously innovated in the computing domain in order to create customer value. We believe that, with the advent of an intelligent society, the computing market will see continuous growth in the future. Currently, the diversity of applications and data is driving heterogeneous computing requirements. Huawei has long partnered with Intel to make great achievements. Together we have contributed to the development of the ICT industry. Huawei and Intel will continue our long-term strategic partnerships and continue to innovate together.”

William Xu, Director of Huawei’s Board and Chief Strategy Marketing Officer (credit: Huawei)

Kunpeng 920: High-Performance ARM-based CPU

Huawei’s high standards of leading the industry are very clear with the release of the new Kunpeng 920.  The new CPU, similar to Huawei’s HiSilicon Kirin 980 (launched in October 2018), was  designed in-house and manufactured on a 7-nanometer processor. According to Huawei, the gain in performance between these two CPU’s emerges from a series of optimized branch prediction algorithms and an increased number of OP units, along with an improved memory subsystem architecture. The Kunpeng 920 provides both higher computing performance for data centers while decreasing overall power consumption. The Kunpeng 920 is packed with 64 cores, clocking an impressive 2.6GHZ, and paired with 8-channel DDR4 memory allows the Kunpeng 920 to score over 930 on the SPECint Benchmark, 25% higher than the industry benchmark.  For the sake of comparison, the previous industry leader was the Fujitsu 7-nanometer A64X. Beyond its speed is the CPU’s power efficiency, which performs 30% better than its competitors.

Kunpeng 920 performance (credit: Huawei)

In terms of system integration, the new CPU has increased with two 100G RoCE ports. Kunpeng 920 also supports PCIe Gen4 and CCIX interfaces, and provides 640 Gbps total bandwidth.  In addition, the single-slot speed is twice that of the incumbent offering, effectively improving the performance of storage and various accelerators.

TaiShan Series: Huawei’s ARM-based Server Built to Perform

To complement the Kunpeng 920, at today’s press conference Huawei also released its TaiShan series servers, powered by the company’s new CPU. Aimed at tackling three distinct issues, storage,  high-density, and balancing both requirements, the Taishan series designed three unique models. Powered by the Kunpeng 920, the TaiShan servers are built for big data, distributed storage, and ARM native application scenarios. These unique scenarios are ideal for the ARM architecture offering many advantages in many-core and performance per watt. The TaiShan series are ideal computing platforms for enterprises with high performance and low power consumption. Designed especially in big data scenarios, the TaiShan servers are tuned for optimal many-core high concurrency and resource scheduling to deliver a 20% computing performance boost.  

As Mr. Xu stated at the press conference, “The ARM industry is seeing a new development opportunity. The Kunpeng 920 CPU and TaiShan servers newly released by Huawei are primarily used in big data, distributed storage, and ARM native applications. We will work with global partners in the spirit of openness, collaboration, and shared success to drive the development of the ARM ecosystem and expand the computing space, and embrace a diversified computing era.”

TaiShan server (credit: Huawei

Open and Collaborative ARM Ecosystem is Geared for Mutual Success

For years, Huawei has continuously promoted industry cooperation and collaboration among its industry partners in terms of hardware, basic software, and applications. The company’s unique approach is predicated on the growing trend that an intelligent society, with all things connected, and sensing, is well underway. In light of these industry trends and application requirements, a new era of diversified computing is emerging. The ability to process multiple data types and scenarios are the driving force behind optimizing computing architecture.   

Summarizing the company’s vision of serving as an industry leader across all verticals, from telecommunications to servers to handsets, Mr. Xu noted that “With Kirin 980, Huawei has taken smartphones to a new level of intelligence. With products and services (e.g., Huawei Cloud) designed based on Ascend 310, Huawei enables inclusive AI for industries. Today, with Kunpeng 920, we are entering an era of diversified computing embodied by multiple cores and heterogeneity. Huawei has invested patiently and intensively in computing innovation to continuously make breakthroughs. We will work with our customers and partners to build a fully connected, intelligent world.”

Mordecai Holtz is the Co-CEO of Blue Thread Marketing (www.bluethreadmarketing.com), a boutique digital marketing agency working with a range of clients from startups to cities. With each client, our goal is to weave a unique digital narrative that provides maximum engagement, quality content, and optimal management across all digital channels. Mordecai serves as a mentor to the local startup scene and is an active contributor on several industry blogs serving the global social media community.

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