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Sony to bring Thunderbolt in the shape of a USB jack?

updated 04:10 pm EDT, Tue May 17, 2011

Sony ultraportable to get Thunderbolt

An upcoming Sony Vaio ultraportable notebook may implement Intel's 10Gbps Thunderbolt technology in the form of a Type-A USB jack, rather than Apple's Mini DisplayPort connector for the same interface. This is not official, but comes from a 'trusted source,' according to Engadget. The so-called Ultimate Mobile PC that hosts Thunderbolt is likely the same one seen in the past.

While a hybrid USB 3.0 connector with an optical interface and electrical connection was demonstrated by Intel, it was done in a prototype. Since then, the USB Implementers Forum mentioned that USB connectors are not designed for use in support of other technology applications or standards, including combo connectors. It is possible Sony licensed its own implementation with the USB Forum, however.

The official Thunderbolt spec was created as a collaboration between Apple and Intel and relies on Mini DisplayPort. The official connector is also capable of sending video data, making it a more attractive proposition than this proposed USB combo port.

By Electronista Staff


  1. burger

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Sep 2000



    Leave it to Sony to make a proprietary connector for something already in production. So when people ask for a Thunderbolt cable, you can sort through your 5000 other special cables to find out you don't have that one.

  1. viktorob

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: May 2011


    Sony! put your feets in the ground!!!

    Some body has to tell sony they are not the biggest Tech Company and they can not establish their own standards anymore.
    Remember the Mini disc? trying to overtake the Compact Disc format?
    Remember the Memory Stick? trying to fragment the Secure Digital memory?

  1. Herod

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jun 2007



    why even continue to make the Vaio?

  1. eldarkus

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Feb 2004


    Sony & Apple

    While I dislike this, Apple has had their fair share of proprietary connectors over the years. Power cords, ADC, SATA hard drive connector in new iMacs, Speakers for the Cube and Tower, mini VGA/DVI, etc

    what would be cool is if the Thunderbolt port could be used as a USB port as well. I'd much rather see this than just a thunderbolt port. Makes much more sense to me.

  1. testudo

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Aug 2001



    engadget's 'trusted source' is just completely wrong and it's just a USB jack.

    Or it's a combo jack that supports plugging a miniDisplayPort plug or a USB jack (like they make for USB and eSATA).

    Or it's just some stupid photoshop picture of some concept PC that isn't anywhere close to being ready to go so who gives a rat's a**.

  1. wrenchy

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Nov 2009


    re: Boo

    >>>you can sort through your 5000 other special cables to find out you don't have that one.

    Sounds like an Apple experience to me.

    Apple. The king of special, proprietary connectors, cables and adapters.

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