So, here we are, excited as we can be for the much-anticipated USB 3.0. I mean, who wouldn’t be? USB 2.0 has been around for a few years already and even if it hasn’t overstayed its welcome (yet), we’re dealing with increasingly-larger files to transfer and bigger transfer speeds would actually be great. But despite our anticipation of USB 3.0, it looks like it’s not going to stay as long as its predecessor had.
You guys can blame Light Peak.
What is Light Peak anyway? It is Intel’s code-name for a new high-speed optical cable technology designed to connect electronic devices to each other in a peripheral bus. It has the capability to deliver high bandwidth, starting at 10 Gbps, with the potential ability to scale to 100 Gbps. It is intended as a single universal replacement for current buses such as SCSI, SATA, USB, FireWire, and HDMI. In comparison to these buses, Light Peak is much faster, longer ranged, smaller, and more flexible in terms of protocol support.
Let me repeat: 10 Gbps. Minimum. It can reach up to 100 Gbps. And the best part? It’s compatible with USB devices.
Intel’s upcoming Light Peak standard could take over from USB 3.0, company senior fellow Kevin Kahn said today at the Intel Developer Forum in Beijing. The 10Gbps peripheral standard was technically built to link up other standards but was seen by Kahn as possibly replacing 5Gbps USB 3.0 altogether in the next few years. He went so far as to treat Light Peak as a finality that may replace any other standard in the future.
“We view this as a logical future successor to USB 3.0,” Kahn told those gathered at the event. “In some sense[s] we’d… like to build the last cable you’ll ever need.”
The Intel fellow also made clear the release plans and noted that Light Peak would only become available to component makers in late 2010. Actual shipping PCs should be ready earlier in 2011.
What do you think?