Huawei has responded to US sanctions by launching the Huawei Mate 60 Pro, a smartphone that features a larger number of Chinese-made chips compared to previous models. Experts at TechInsights have revealed that two-thirds of the Mate 60 Pro’s chips were made in China, compared to just a third in previous models.
The Kirin 9000S, the processor used in the Mate 60 Pro, was developed by the Chinese company SMIC, which has been suspected by US congressmen who believe that US technology was used in its manufacture. In light of these allegations, the US Department of Commerce is trying to find out the origin and structure of the chip.
Despite the sanctions, it is clear that China has not been restricted in the production of 14nm chips, as most Mate 60 Pro chips are made in China. However, they still lag behind the world’s leading manufacturers in terms of technological processes.
Another challenge for China is the high waste rate in chip production. It is estimated that SMIC can only supply half of the chips required, while the industry norm calls for a production rate of 90% of finished products. This limits Huawei’s ability to procure enough chips and make up lost ground.
Although the Huawei Mate 60 Pro is popular in China and is expected to sell 15 million units, US sanctions have created major challenges for Huawei and the semiconductor industry in China in general.