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Alba Iulia
Thursday, May 28, 2020

MediaTek caught in the act of cheating on the performance of its SoCs

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Mediatek 5G

According to an Anandtech investigation, MediaTek has integrated into the software it provides to its partners using its chipsets an artificially boosting module.

Two years after thwarting the tricks of a certain Huawei who, too, trafficked his fleas in order to make them more efficient during the benchmarks, Anandtech reveals that MediaTek is doing the same in order to boost its results.

MediaTek tampers with the code of certain OEMs

When a manufacturer opts for a MediaTek SoC, the founder provides him on the one hand with the chipset, and on the other with the firmware that allows the smartphone to take full advantage of it.

According to Anandtech, MediaTek has thus modified the code provided to certain partners in order to temporarily boost the clock frequencies of the SoC when a benchmark software is in use.

What put the chip on the ear of the specialists, it is to discover that an OPPO Reno3 Pro equipped with a Helio P95 surpassed in performance the enormous Dimensity 1000L – the most high-end SoC of the founder.

A very real sham, since after having tweaked the benchmark application to ensure that the system can no longer recognize it, the results obtained by the smartphone have been significantly reduced.

MediaTek cheat benchmarks

Left, the actual performance of the OPPO Reno3 Pro. Right, the tampered performances. © Anandtech

Performance inflated by 30 to 70%

MediaTek does not go with the back of the spoon. According to Anandtech’s observations, the performance gain allowed by the fraudulent code was at least 30%, and up to 70% on certain tests.

And the OPPO Reno3 Pro is certainly not the only smartphone accused. In total, nine smartphones from OPPO, Vivo, Xiaomi, Realme, iVoomi and Sony have passed on the operating table of Anandtech. All of them included a code allowing to artificially inflate the performances of the SoC when a benchmark software was detected.

MediaTek cheat benchmarks

The list of devices tested by Anandtech. © Anandtech

MediaTek Defends Against These Charges

The Taiwanese founder did not remain without reacting to the accusations of Anandtech. Quickly, the company contacted the media to explain, and posted a press release on his blog to legitimize his actions.

Reaffirming its confidence in the benchmarks that represent, according to him, the true capacities of their chipsets, MediaTek explains that a large number of factors is likely to vary the performance of its products.

First, the most recent SoCs are effectively designed to adapt their power according to the load. And the benchmarks are precisely coded so as to test the hardware capacities to the maximum. But not to the point of reaching a difference of around 70%, tempers Anandtech still.

Moreover, and rightly so, MediaTek points out that the code it provides to its partners, which also makes it possible to boost the performance of SoC, is free to be integrated or not. “Builders Have The Final Word On What Type Of Optimizations They Want To Include In Their Android Package Kits (APKs)“Says MediaTek, as if to get rid of the hot potato.

Only, as Android Police recalls, many manufacturers have already been pinned for similar reasons, which would tend to agree with MediaTek. We talked about it in the preamble: this is the case of Huawei, but also of Samsung which, last October, was fined $ 13.4 million for cheating on the Galaxy S4 benchmarks.

Source: Anandtech

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