The fast just got faster.
The USB 3.0 promoter group has announced an updated USB 3.0 specification- SuperSpeed USB 3.0.
The newer standard is expected to double the currently supported data-speeds on USB 3.0 from 5 Gbps to 10 Gbps. The higher speeds can be accredited to certain hardware enhancements and efficient data encoding.
Some key improvements in the newer USB 3.0 standard:
- 10 Gbps data transfer rates
- Improved Data Encoding, which ensures faster and efficient data transfer
- Existing USB 2.0 and USB 3.0 devices would be backward compatible with the newer standards.
The group behind implementation of the newer USB 3.0 standard said that they’re also working out a solution to carry electric current alongside the cable. The move is clearly aimed at making mobile devices and iPods charge faster, when connected to Laptops or Desktops. However, this may lead to development of SuperSpeed USB 3.0 compliant cables, which would have to be purchased additionally to support the enhanced functionalities.
“The higher speed capability of SuperSpeed USB at 10Gbit/s is expected to be useful for connecting higher-performance external hard disk raid (HDD) and solid-state disk (SSD) drives,” said Jeff Ravencraft, USB-IF chief operations officer.
The newly availed specifications place USB 3.0 in par with Apple’s Thunderbolt standard, which supports electrifying transfer speeds. Though Intel had spent considerable time and effort in developing the Thunderbolt standard, it wasted no time in adopting a faster USB 3.0.
According to The Verge, this is how Alex Peleg, Vice-President of Intel’s Architecture Group explained the move, “We recognize that more mainstream client computing applications are going to need higher throughput to user-connected peripherals and devices”.
The faster SuperSpeed USB 3.0 standard requires hardware enhancements, and hence, don’t expect your newly purchased laptop to support such expeditious data transfers. The forum of the USB implementer reads that it would still take some time to update the specification, probably six-seven months more. Hence, the USB 3.0 specification is expected to be updated by middle of 2013, and should hit consumer products by late 2014.