Apple A13 Bionic vs A12 vs Kirin 990 5G vs Snapdragon 855 Plus – Antutu-Geekbench benchmark scores

Apple recently introduced the iPhone 11 trio and Apple A13 chip simultaneously. This is according to Apple spokesperson, the fastest chipset on any smartphone. A few days back, Huawei had introduced its new SoC series named Kirin 990, which includes a regular 4G LTE variant and a fully 5G focussed mobile platform. Needless to say, Qualcomm is the market leader in the semiconductor industry. Therefore, we can’t forget its flagship SoC Snapdragon 855 Plus, if we are comparing the best chipsets available at present.

Unarguably, all three are mighty processors and fully capable of performing all kinds of essential tasks. There should be no issue running any app on smartphones powered by these chipsets. These tiar-1 SoCs hold on the world’s powerful and best-performing devices in the works. In the meantime, we will also compare the Apple A13 with its predecessor A12 Bionic chip, to find out how this one is different from the older one. All in all, we will be comparing Apple A13 Bionic vs A12 vs Kirin 990 5G vs Snapdragon 855+. Without any doubt, let’s start a full in-depth comparison.

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Apple A13 Bionic vs A12 vs Kirin 990 5G vs Snapdragon 855 Plus Specs Comparison

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Hardware and Performance

The Apple A13 bionic uses Hexa-core CPU with two powerful Lightning cores point @2.66GHz, and there are four efficiency cores called Thunder. In comparison, Apple A12 is also powered by the dual-cluster Hexa-core CPU, which arrives with 2x Vortex cores @2.49 GHz and 4x Tempest power efficiency cores. The company claims to deliver 20% faster CPU speed and 30% more power efficiency.

Apple A13 structure

On the other hand, Kirin 990 5G comes with a tri-cluster octa-core CPU. Two powerful Cortex-A76 cores clock @2.86GHz followed by another 2x Cortex-A76 cores @2.36GHz and 4x Cortex-A55 cores @1.95GHz. The Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 Plus has another tri-cluster CPU but with a different kind of architecture use. It has custom Kryo 485 (Cortex-A76) cores with one powerful cluster clocked @2.96 GHz, the other three (A76) arrive with 2.42 GHz clock speed, and 4x power efficient Kryo 485 (A55) cores remain @1.78 GHz.

On paper, it shows the dominance of Snapdragon 855+ and Kirin 990 chipsets. But real-world performance tests show a different story. Apple is known for its significant optimizations, whether it is the software part or hardware. Last year, Apple A12 was one of the fastest chipset used on any smartphone, and this year, you can see the dominance of Apple A13. Surprisingly, A12 still beats the 2019 flagship processors. It lacks some advancements made by the Snapdragon 855+ and Kirin 990 5G.

Besides, Apple A13 uses the second generation TSMS 7nm+ node. Both Apple A12 and Snapdragon 855+ plus are manufactured on the first generation TSMS 7nm process. Lastly, the Kirin 990 5G chip brings the more advanced 7nm+ EUV node by TSMS. Looking at Apple’s past track record, power efficiency and performance should be superior to the other three; still, Kirin 990 5G secures the 2nd place.

Moving to the GPU, the Apple A13 sticks to the own-designed quad-core GPU, as we have seen on A12. But the generation gap saw a lot of improvements over the A12 Bionic chip. If we believe in Apple’s claim, it delivers a 20% faster speed and 40% excellent power efficiency over the A12’s GPU. Moreover, Kirin 990 adopts Mali-G76MP16, which is 16 cores GPU. But we were surprised to see why the company didn’t use the latest Mali-G77, same with CPU architecture. ARM’s latest Cortex-A77 cores combine with Mali-G77, which Huawei denied utterly.

Finally, the Snapdragon 855+ comes with the latest Adreno 640 GPU, which has also seen some significant improvements over its predecessor. As of now, we don’t have any data to compare, but we are expecting Apple A13 Bionic to take the lead on the other two.

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Artificial Intelligence

Both Apple A12 and A13 Bionic bring the octa-core Neural Engine to handle the AI tasks. But A13 is way more advanced compared to A12. It is capable of performing up to a whopping 1 trillion tasks in 1 second, which is even lower than Apple’s last year’s claim of 5 trillion operations at the same time.

Apple promises to deliver a 20% faster speed and 15% more power efficiency. Apple reportedly plans to push Deep Fusion technology via a software update, which is Apple’s version of HDR10+. It takes four photos before pressing the shutter, and the other 4 when you do and then one long exposure. Then it picks the best shots and combines them all.

The Snapdragon 855+ has its own Hexagon 690 quad-core AI engine combined with a dedicated tensor accelerator. It gives the chipset advanced machine learning performance.  Some notable advantages provided by the Qualcomm NPU are scene detection, text recognition, super resolutions in snapshots, face authentication, dual and single-camera bokeh.

The NPU is well capable of running up to 7 trillion AI tasks per second by making it one of the most exceptional AI engine. It also supports some popular frameworks, including TensorFlow by Google, Facebook’s Caffe 2, and the Open Neural Network Exchange (ONNX).

Lastly, the Kirin 990 5G has three-cores Da Vinci NPU divided into 2 Big + 1 Tiny core. The bigger cores are present for demanding high power tasks, while a tiny power efficiently core handles the small AI tasks. It can render real-time videos based on the new Real-Time Multi-Instance Segmentation.

All three are designed for heavy AI tasks in an era where AI’s importance can’t be neglected. Indeed, AI is the future of the tech industry, and all three are moving in the right direction. Indeed, AI will leave a significant impact on battery performance and camera optimizations.

Read More: MediaTek Helio G90T vs Snapdragon 712 vs Kirin 810 comparison – GeekBench Antutu scores

Antutu-Geekbench Benchmark Scores

The Apple A13 Bionic processor scores 5,472 points in single-core and 13,769 points in multi-core results on Geekbench. The A12 managed to score 4,812 points for single-core and 11,280 points in multi-core. The Snapdragon 855+ results in 3,623 points in single-core and 11,365 points in multi-core. Apart from that, Kirin 990 5G scores 3,851 points for single-core and 12,638 points for multi-core on Geekbench.

Apple A13 Bionic updated Geekbench scores
Apple A12 Geekbench
Kirin 990 5G Geekbench
Kirin 990 5G Geekbench

Overall, Apple A13 takes the lead on all other tested SoCs and significantly beats in the single-core results and multi-core both. It is interesting to see, Apple A12 beats Snapdragon 855+ with a considerable margin in the single-core results, and A13 even is superior to A12. All in all, Apple A13 is the best scoring chip on any smartphone of 2019 flagships.

The Snapdragon 855+ scores nearly 4,00,000 points in Antutu v7 benchmark test. The Apple A12, on the other hand, scores almost 3,65,00 points on the same platform. In comparison, Apple A13 Bionic takes the lead on Snapdragon 855 Plus in the latest test. It comprehensively beat the competition with 4,62,098 points. Remember that we have included Antutu v7 results for a fair comparison. Otherwise, Antutu v8 delivers way more points. Apart from that, Kirin 990 5G Antutu scores are not yet updated, which we will cover later.

Apple A13 Antutu

As we expected, Apple A13 takes a healthy lead on its competitors. These benchmark scores are losing credibility after we heard some manipulation incidents. Therefore, you can take these scores as a reference, and we wouldn’t advise you to judge any device blindly basis on the benchmark scores.

Related Links: Snapdragon 665 vs 710 vs 712 comparison, Antutu-GeekBench benchmarks

Final Conclusion – Which one is better?

Although these are initial impressions of Apple A13 and Kirin 990 chipset, we can’t conclude. Overall, Apple A13 seems to be promising to beat other chipsets around the world. Qualcomm’s best is yet to come with Snapdragon 865, which is rumored to have some worthy upgrades over the Snapdragon 855+. On the other hand, Kirin 990 chipset yet be tested its real-world performance. We will be updating the article as soon as we get the hands-on Mate 30 series.

Looking at the current scenario and Apple’s past track record, we can say that Apple A13 is the winner. It is the world’s fastest mobile processor, according to Apple’s claim, which I also believe to be true. Even Apple A12 is still a mighty chip, but Snapdragon 855+ and Kirin 990 5G get some advancements to beat the competition.

Besides, SD 855+ and Kirin 990 have 5G support, which Apple’s chips are lacking entirely. In the era where companies are rushing towards the 5G, Apple doesn’t want to be part of the mass. Next year, Apple would be planning for 5G phones, but this year it didn’t happen as we expected. 5G needs to evolve a lot before it reaches a broad audience.

The Kirin 990 5G chip uses an integrated 5G modem to make the chip smaller and power-efficient. It can produce up to 2.3 Gbps downlink and 1.25 Gbps uplink speeds. On the other hand, Snapdragon 855+ has an external X50 5G modem, which can go as high as 2 Gbps for download and 316 Mbps upload speed. In comparison, Kirin 990 5G looks a better choice when it comes to faster connectivity. What are your thoughts? Do let’s know in below comment section!

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37 thoughts on “Apple A13 Bionic vs A12 vs Kirin 990 5G vs Snapdragon 855 Plus – Antutu-Geekbench benchmark scores

  1. Definitely biased towards Apple sheet. All them benchmarks mean nothing in real world. YouTube and net is loaded with examples how last year Android flagships,including mine,LG G7,wipe the floor with iPhone X when it comes to speed. And this guy comes to tell me,that on paper Android chips are faster,but in real life A13 is the fastest chip up to date. Yeah,sure,same song we heard with the Bionic A12,until we saw the real world speed tests in YouTube. Just find LG G7 vs iPhone X, twice+ the price difference,and see for yourself.

    1. who cares about LG or other Android phone performance if i prefer iPhone. Even old iPhone models will receive latest software and will run all tasks quickly. How many android flagship phones will get latest software updates ? 1 year or 2?

  2. I think it doesn’t matter anymore who is the fastest chip. Today’s flagship phones are so fast that we are not waiting for them to perform tasks anymore. I have bought my last “flagship” phone, the One Plus 5T. When this one is done, I’ll buy a $200 dollar phone. For almost everything, a $200 dollar phone is more than adequate.

    1. Hi Valter Vilar,

      I agree with your point. For day to day tasks, you won’t even notice the difference if the respective manufacturer includes good software optimizations. It could be tricky only for graphic-intensive tasks, where it requires real power.

  3. As you said “these benchmark scores are losing credibility”.
    I truly believe that apple manipulate these tests because Kirin is much more powerful, has more transistors etc. How is possible apple A13 be better? I don’t know, I’ve always never believed on these benchmark test when it comes to Apple devices.

    1. Hi Ezequiel,

      Benchmark scores are nowadays easily manipulated there is no doubt. But Apple has a rich history to producing the world’s best CPU chipsets and these scores just further confirm it.

    2. Likely the fact that Apple owns the whole stack. From the software all the way down to the hardware. Apple can develop either the hardware or the software to complement each other. There by surpassing others that don’t do there own hardware development.

    3. Do you have any proof against Apple? Of course you not. On the other hand, Huawei, Xiaomi, Oppo,… are very famous for cheating in benchmarks. Just google it.

      1. May be you have apple phone.. that’s why your thought are similar to other iphone user.
        so please update your knowledge. banchmark may be cheated. but if you have technical knowledge. you can compare these thing.

    4. I don’t know if it is fake, anyway, I don’t really like Apple products, don’t hate, but would not buy one unless it would pay itself back (development). But as a CS professional, there is technical and plausible base for Apple chips being good even if they do not perform great in overall or show to have less transistors or smaller multi-core speed. Not only iPhones give less space for wild intensive use of multitasking but also in general computer algorithms do not take great advantages of multiple cores, performance rarely really scale and honestly when it do scale, in many cases, humans do not notice until they measure.

      To better sum up, performance is not an easy subject, naturally excellently parallel algorithms are not so common and already fast tasks will not change perceptibly, even worse, you may be using a lot of extra energy to move from 300 ms to 150 ms and not noticing, etc. Anyway there is much more things in the game, like Apple having its SDK based in more near to the metal technology, etc, and also it do not means that in overall it solves everything, some times it perform bad.

      1. “but also in general computer algorithms do not take great advantages of multiple cores,”

        I’m not really sure what you’re getting at.

        First, let’s make a distinction here. Applications deal in threads, not cores. It’s also how Intel was emulating multiple cores for years with Hyperthreading even before multicore processors were the norm.

        Second, algorithms themselves really have nothing to do with multithreading. You can make any algorithm multithreaded if you choose to, but it doesn’t make sense to do so in most cases, as you already mentioned. Not even counting power consumption or likely negligible performance gains, multithreading can be much harder to test, maintain, and find bugs.

        That said, there are significant benefits of multicore processors today that directly impact every mobile application. For a regular consumer app that is a clear separation of tasks. That means worker threads each doing their own thing that ultimately displays something to the user. Android has a UI thread, and If I recall, it doesn’t even allow you to do anything special on the UI thread. You have to handle everything through callbacks and events. It’s been years since I wrote anything for Android though.

        Take a web browser as an example. It might process Javascript, update the UI, fire input events, and handle requests/responses all on different threads. And that’s likely an oversimplification; I’m willing to bet there are even more worker threads, all firing events when they’re done with a task.

        This doesn’t even take into consideration the various system services working in the background on their own threads.

        Ultimately, I guess my point is that parallel algorithms really don’t matter for the average mobile app for consumers. Yes, there are special cases, like video or image processing (Which are likely already multithreaded when using built-in APIs), but most apps really don’t care or need to worry about that.

  4. I appreciate your time into this, but let me give you my own example (I use the honor play featuring the kirin 970 that was a flagship processor directed towards the iPhone 10 and it clearly beats it in the comparisons) go check the p20 Pro vs iPhone 10 and see the results.. Might be true that apple’s chip is the most powerful on paper but what about the day to day experience, AI is way better on kirin and snapdragon than the bionic chip. Npu on The kirin plays a major role for the daily tasks and I’m very impressed more than the snapdragon 845 equivalent.

    1. Hi kishan Raju,

      I am curious too to test the Kirin 990 5G chipset. Once the Huawei launches its Mate 30 series, i will further update this article with latest results. Honestly speaking, Apple A13 seems to me a winner going with the available data at present.

  5. “In addition, Apple A13 uses the second generation TSMS 7nm+ node. Both Apple A12 and Snapdragon 855+ plus are manufactured on the first generation TSMS 7nm process. ”
    For this reason alone the comparison between sd 855 and apple a13 is invalid. A comparison should be made “with all things equal in mind” and in this case, the manufacturing process is among all things equal. So, the sd855 or sd 855+ should only be compared to A12 bionic.
    A13 should be compared to the upcoming sd865.
    there’s no detailed comparison of gpus. We only see scores for the cpus. No combined comparison in Anttutu
    Additionally having a good score in a bench is good and all, but true performance is estimated by putting the cpus to sustained computational loads for a considerable amount of time, such that would likely raise chip’s temperature and core utilizaton to the max, Achieving a mobile test score “after a few brief bursts of computation” is no guarantee of the computational prowess of a chip especially if the throttling comes early and leads to much lower frequencies.

    1. PS. The single score test alone in all mobile chips, is hugely suspicious,Maybe it is achieved , exactly by this kind of tinkering. You see, an core i7 9700k for example ; it has about 5 times the multicore test in comparison to single core. All mobile devices only achieve a 2+ in multicore tests as compared to single core. What this tells me , there’s a high probablility they let the one single core go overdirive for few minutes , because there’s the thermal headroom to do so , while in actuality mobile cores are at least 2 to 3 times slower. Is not it strange we have never seen a 32M prime test,, a 1 million or 20 millions pi digits , ever? They are supposedly hidden in geekbench or antutu. Well, this does not convince me, especially when I have already compared modern mobile chips myself running the Chudnovsky algorithm in them and desktops. You would not want to know what a huge gap separates them with desktop chips. Even if it is a niche case, the gap in that simple test shows that telling to the people desktop chips are about 3 times faster is even maybe conservative.

    2. Hi Pro,

      I understand your concern regarding the GPU comparison. Due to limitations of resources, we haven’t yet updated the Antutu scores. Once we get further information, we will update this article.

    3. You seem do not understand what’s this nanometer technology do? It is just the size of transistor nothing to do with speed or better performance. For power saving usage yes your process technology matter 7nm vs 10 nm plus your SoC die size

      1. Hi Willnosm,

        I understand it very well. Smaller-sized chip means better power efficiency. If the chip is more power-efficient, it will generate less heat. Thereafter, performance will be automatically improved in heavy power-hungry tasks. Hence, processing size indirectly impacts the power-saving and performance both. Hopefully, you get my point. Have a nice day!

  6. I think we can’t say bionic chipset A12 or A13 is faster than other two, if really wanna know who is faster, make the iPhone run under android, the same android version. it will show us the truth of speed of that processor.
    I’m pretty sure, even A13 can’t compete with SD845 (not 855+)

    iPhone run with special OS, produced by their own the same like I design a low spec hardware device and just run my own software, I can make that seems fastest processor.

    And I believe, when ARK OS comming, bye bye ios…

    If compare SD855+ vs Kirin 990 or vs SD865, that’s the right one. We can say who is faster then…

    1. Hi Mei,

      It may be true! Apple Bionic SoCs design accordingly iOS with deep optimizations. Therefore, chances are bright it won’t work as good as it is working with the iOS platform.

  7. With 469708 points, the Black Shark 2 Pro of 12 + 256 GB is at the top of the list. This is a beast that uses the powerful Snapdragon 855+ processor with UFS 3.0. Without a doubt, nobody is very surprised that this mobile gaming is at the top of the ranking. (translated)

    1. Hi juan sevillano,

      the mentioned test is performed on Antutu v8, whereas, Apple A13 phones tested on Antutu v7. To make a fair comparison, I have only included Antutu v7 tests of both the parties.

  8. Hi
    I think kirin 990 benchmark scores mentioned are for the 4G variant because the 5G kirin chip scores still not recorded

    1. Hi Fyah,

      Because these scores were obtained using Antutu v8. As mentioned,
      I have only included Antutu v7 results for a fair comparison.

  9. The A13 bionic’s 1 trillion ops are for new matrix math units present in the new high performance CPU cores. The 8 core NPU was rated at over 5 trillion ops on the A12, now with 20% improvement it should be over 6 trillion ops on the A13.

  10. The best feature for Apple is a combo of hardware and software. Honestly speaking, A13 processor has no benefits compared to both competitors. But software optimization makes it all. However, if you want freedom of choice and versatility (what’s Apple sticks around officially) forget about iPhone. Their “speed” is not more than running your car inside the garage. In fact, all processors have more than needed calculation power.

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