updated 02:15 am EDT, Wed September 19, 2007
USB 3.0 group at Intel IDF
Intel, HP and Microsoft on Tuesday announced the new USB 3.0 Promoter Group. The new marketing and development alliance is designed to create a new personal desktop connectivity standard that can deliver over 10 times the speed of the current USB 2.0 standard. Also being supported by NEC, NXP Semiconductors and Texas Instruments, the technology will target fast sync-and-go transfer applications in the PC, consumer and mobile segments and will accommodate the growing need for standard digital connectivity and file size of approaching 25GB. The USB 3.0 standard, expected to be completed in the first half of next year, will be backward compatible with current USB products and will draw from the same architecture of wired USB. Intel said the group is "committed to preserving the existing USB device class driver infrastructure and investment, look-and-feel and ease-of-use of USB while continuing to expand this great technology's capabilities."
In addition, the USB 3.0 specification will be optimized for low power and improved protocol efficiency, according to Intel, and both ports and cabling will be designed to enable backward compatibility. Intel says it expects that the technology will also allow for future optical capabilities.
"USB 3.0 is the next logical step for the PC's most popular wired connectivity," said Jeff Ravencraft, technology strategist with Intel and president of the USB Implementers Forum (USB-IF). "The digital era requires high-speed performance and reliable connectivity to move the enormous amounts of digital content now present in everyday life. USB 3.0 will meet this challenge while maintaining the ease-of-use experience that users have come to love and expect from any USB technology."
The USB-IF, previously formed to provide support and development resources for USB standards, is expected to act as the trade association for the USB 3.0 specification and the first implementations of USB 3.0 will likely be in the form of discrete silicon, according to Intel.