Published: Sun, September 09, 2018
Industry | By Dora Warner

Huawei caught cheating in a benchmark test

Huawei caught cheating in a benchmark test

Earlier this week, AnandTech discovered that Huawei's flagship P20 smartphone had been specifically programmed to maximize performance while running 3DMark, a popular benchmarking app.

Huawei reportedly claimed that the peak of productivity during the startup benchmark application, was "intuitive leap", based on the work of artificial intelligence.

On the heels of an in-depth analysis at Anandtech, UL Benchmarks (formerly Futuremark) has delisted Huawei's P20, P20 Pro, Nova 3, and Honor Play devices from its public 3DMark Sling Shot Extreme benchmark database.

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In reaction to the report, Underwriters Laboratories Benchmarks, which owns 3DMark, has made a decision to blacklist the Huawei P20, P20 Pro, Nova 3 and Honor Play 3, based on data from AnandTech and its own testing. The decision comes after the Chinese smartphone maker, which recently surpassed Apple to become the second largest smartphone vendor in the world, was found to have cheated in order to get higher scores.

Huawei and UL have also discussed current common benchmark testing methodologies in general. That difference in scoring confirms that the devices are detecting executable names to trigger "Performance Mode" rather than adapting to the test by way of dynamic voltage and frequency scaling or other heuristics that would presumably benefit all applications, not just benchmarks.

Huawei told UL Benchmarks that it had plans to offer a speed-boosting mode via a future update which other apps could benefit from to achieve the same kind of performance boost.

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Third, benchmarking companies have other methods to test a device's actual expected capabilities, which is a good thing. The phones literally get a boost in power by maxing out power consumption, delivering much better performance at the expense of battery life - something impractical in normal use, as anyone who's seen their phone battery die before the day is out can attest to. Huawei smartphones use advanced technologies such as AI to optimize the performance of hardware including CPU, GPU, and NPU.

When AnandTech ran tests using an unlabeled version on benchmark apps, the phones were unable to recognize the same and performed poorly. Honor is planning to provide users with access to "Performance Mode" so they can use the maximum power of their device when they need to.

Also Read: Huawei Attempts to Deceive People by Passing off a DSLR Picture as a Photograph Clicked by Its Latest Nova However, strictly speaking, Huawei has not committed a crime, as the rules for the company are not crystal clear.

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