updated 10:26 am EDT, Thu August 1, 2013
High-speed transfer standard completed by USB 3.0 Promoter Group
The USB 3.0 Promoter Group has finalized the specification of USB 3.1, also known as SuperSpeed USB. The new specification standard will allow for USB data transfers at a rate of up to 10Gbps, effectively doubling the data rate of USB 3.0, but still retaining backwards compatibility with devices using USB 3.0 and earlier standards.
The standard has remained relatively unchanged since it was shown by the group in January, with USB 3.1 having not only a higher data rate, but also improved data encoding and an improved I/O power efficiency. USB 3.0 Promoter Group chairman Brad Saunders said "The specification team worked hard to make sure that changes made to support higher speeds were limited and remained consistent with existing USB 3.0 architecture to ease product development."
Three developer conferences, designed to help interested parties implement the new USB 3.1 specification, will be held later this year. The US version will be held on August 21st, with the European Developer Days set as October 1st and 2nd in Ireland, while the Asia conference will be held on two days in early December.
While the development of the USB 3.1 standard has completed, work is still going on for other competing connection methods. Intel is working on a successor to Thunderbolt, titled Thunderbolt 2, with the first devices using the 20Gbps standard set to go on sale early next year.