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Thought Helio P60 was a great chip? Helio P80, P90 tipped for release

It looks like MediaTek is working on the Helio P80 and P90, but what would these chipsets be capable of?

Published onAugust 17, 2018

The MediaTek logo as seen at Mobile World Congress 2018.
  • MediaTek is working on the Helio P80 and P90 chipsets, according to journalist Roland Quandt.
  • It’s believed that OPPO will be one of the first customers for the unannounced SoCs.
  • The naming convention suggests the Helio P80 and P90 will succeed the Helio P60.

The MediaTek Helio P60 chipset has probably been one of the surprise hits of the year, bringing a relatively powerful CPU and dedicated AI silicon to the mid-range market. Now, it looks like the mobile chip company could be gearing up for two processors to out-perform the P60.

According to WinFuture journalist Roland Quandt, MediaTek is working on Helio P80 and Helio P90 chipsets. Quandt adds that Oppo is expected to be one of the first customers for the new processors — they were one of the first customers for the Helio P60 after all.

Also, OPPO is (one of) the first customer(s) for both of these.
— Roland Quandt (@rquandt) August 16, 2018

Based on the naming convention, we can assume that these chips — if they indeed exist — will succeed the Helio P60. So what kind of upgrades should we expect?

What would Helio P80, P90 offer?

MediaTek Helio chipset

For starters, a switch to newer Arm CPU cores seems like a logical move, switching out the P60’s legacy Cortex-A73 and Cortex-A53 cores for the new Cortex-A75/A76 and Cortex-A55. Another question is whether MediaTek would maintain the existing 4+4 arrangement (four heavy cores and four light cores) or if it would pull a Snapdragon 710 and use two heavy cores and six lightweight cores instead. Then again, the company might use different CPU core arrangements for each chipset.

We’d also expect the Taiwanese company to either retain the Helio P60’s AI processing unit (APU) or deliver an upgraded APU. After all, one of the P60’s biggest selling points was the inclusion of AI silicon, so it seems likely that any successors would retain this capability.

MediaTek’s new Helio P22 chip will power the ‘new premium’ smartphone category
The MediaTek logo as seen at Mobile World Congress 2018.

The Helio P60 also stood out in the GPU department (at least compared to Samsung’s similarly equipped Exynos 7885), offering a Mali-G72 MP3 GPU. A move to add more cores or switch to Arm’s latest Mali-G76 GPU seems like an expected step for a P60 successor.

Then again, there’s every chance that the Helio P80 and P90 don’t actually exist or are a long way off. After all, we previously saw reports of the Helio P70 in the lead up to the P60’s release, but nothing has materialized yet.

This latest news also makes us wonder whether MediaTek is continuing to take a break from flagship silicon. The company decided against releasing a flagship X-series processor thus far, following the disappointing sales performance of its Helio X30 last year. Still, if it means we get AI silicon and other premium features in budget phones, I won’t complain.

NEXT: On September 10, your Wear OS smartwatch will likely become an old timer

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