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USB 3.0 set for 10Gbit/s speeds

Intel Thunderbolt under threat
Mon Jan 07 2013, 21:15
USB3 plug and socket

AN INDUSTRY trade organisation behind the Superspeed USB 3.0 standard has announced a connection specification that will offer a data transfer rate of up to 10Gbit/s.

The USB 3.0 Promoter Group and USB Implementers Forum (USB-IF) says the new specification will allow for more efficient data transfers and improved power proficiency. According to the group, the USB 3.0 specification is expected to be completed sometime this year.

"The higher speed capability of Superspeed USB at 10 Gbps is expected to be useful for connecting higher-performance external hard disk raid (HDD) and solid-state disk (SSD) drives," Jeff Ravencraft, USB-IF president and COO told The INQUIRER.

"Additionally, higher-performance Superspeed USB hubs can be built to allow an increased number of Superspeed USB devices to simultaneously connect to higher-performance host devices. Higher-performance USB Audio/Video devices may benefit in supporting higher video display resolutions or multiple display monitors."

The new specification will be compatible with existing USB 3.0 software and devices. It will also be backwards compatible with USB 2.0 products.

According to the USB 3.0 Promoter Group, the new specification will be completed in mid-2013. Consumers should expect to see the technology in products in the years following.

Increasing the speed of USB 3.0 puts it in to direct competition with Intel's Thunderbolt connection technology. Intel launched its Thunderbolt technology in 2011.

At the time, the connection technology offered double the speed of USB 3.0. The increased data transfer speeds reportedly will be useful in upcoming USB docking and storage applications.

USB 3.0 products were first launched in 2009. The connection technology found early success in the storage industry. However, it failed to gain much traction with many lower-end consumer devices during the first few years of its existence. µ


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