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New MacBook Air uses tinier, cheaper Thunderbolt chip

07/28, 9:45pm

MacBook Air 2011 uses mini Eagle Ridge chip

An investigation into the new MacBook Air's internals has revealed that Apple is using a new, relatively untested Thunderbolt chip. Nicknamed Eagle Ridge, it has two 10Gbps bidirectional lanes (40Gbps) where the Light Ridge chip in the iMac, MacBook Pro, and Mac mini has a full four. The part tracked down by AnandTech can only drive one display over Thunderbolt but is also much smaller and most likely cheaper, a key to fitting it into even the 11-inch, $999 Air.

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New Sony VAIO Z: lighter than MacBook Air, packs Thunderbolt

06/27, 8:50pm

Sony VAIO Z repositioned as MacBook Air challenger

Sony chose Europe as the first venue to unveil a redesigned VAIO Z. The new system is now more consciously pitched as a MacBook Air equivalent and moves both the optical drive and even dedicated graphics to an external box, the Power Media Dock. The new PC is the first non-Mac to use Thunderbolt, albeit not in Mini DisplayPort form, and uses the high-speed cable to handle not just Blu-ray or DVD but AMD Radeon HD 6650M video, three USB ports, Ethernet, 3D-capable HDMI, and VGA.

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Intel still owns Thunderbolt trademark, Apple just helped

05/20, 8:15am

Intel says Thunderbolt trademark still its own

Intel moved quickly to hush claims of a Thunderbolt trademark dispute with an official response. Senior communications lead Dave Salvator in a statement late Thursday said that Apple had filed some of the early trademarks but that Intel still had the complete rights "now and into the future," he told BSN. Intel and all computer makers could use Thunderbolt anywhere, "irrespective of operating system."

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Sony preps MacBook Air rival with Thunderbolt; Chrome OS

03/19, 10:45pm

Sony rumored for VAIOs with Thunderbolt, Chrome OS

A pair of rumors from a historically accurate source have Sony planning two ultraportable VAIOs, one of which could be its direct answer to the MacBook Air. The centerpiece, nicknamed the Hybrid PC, would by itself be a fast ultralight with a Core i7, an SSD, HDMI 1.4, WiDi and a weight of just under 2.5 pounds. When docked, however, the system seen by Sony Insider would turn into a full desktop replacement with a Radeon HD 6700M (Whistler-XT), a Blu-ray burner, and full expansion with Ethernet, VGA, and a unique connector that merges USB with AC power.

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Live: Intel's Thunderbolt (Light Peak) event [ended]

02/24, 1:15pm

Intel shows off Thunderbolt as we cover live

Intel held a live event in San Francisco where it showed its newly unveiled Thunderbolt technology found in the new MacBook Pro. The technique merges Mini DisplayPort with the new, ultra-fast 10Gbps Light Peak standard. Visit our live coverage page for information from when we attended the event at 1PM Eastern this afternoon.

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What the new MacBook Pro means for 2011's MacBook Air

02/24, 1:00pm

New MacBook Pros give clues to MacBook Air update

Some have been disappointed that the new MacBook Pros weren't accompanied by an early MacBook Air update. While Apple's most portable system now lags considerably behind most of the MacBook range, the unveilings on Thursday have given a strong sign of what to expect for the Air's rumored June update. Read on for the practical implications.

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MacBook Pro extras: Thunderbolt daisy-chaining, non-spec CPU

02/24, 9:30am

MacBook Pro has Light Peak details and unusual CPU

Apple's launch of the new MacBook Pro has provided major insights into Thunderbolt, the new official name for Light Peak, as well as revelations that Apple is going outside of spec for its processors. Thunderbolt reaches the full 10Gbps speed even while using Mini DisplayPort and can daisy-chain a total of six devices together. Companies such as AJA, Apogee, LaCie and Promise will have RAID drives and other peripherals to use the speed; Apple has also noted that daisy-chaining a Cinema Display works, although this would likely involve only USB devices.

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Apple intros MacBook Pro with Thunderbolt, quad Core i7

02/24, 8:50am

Apple intros 2011 MacBook Pro with Thunderbolt

Apple today launched its rumored new MacBook Pro. The new systems all use Intel's new Sandy Bridge architecture with Core i5 and i7 processors but also revolve around the promised new Thunderbolt technology: the Intel Light Peak technology supplies both Mini DisplayPort as well as high-speed interfaces. Along with direct connections, it's fast enough to not only support FireWire and USB over the connection but gigabit Ethernet and even PCI Express, allowing for multi-drive RAID arrays that work at full speed on a notebook.

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Thunderbolt I/O may be wide standard, wait until Intel event

02/23, 11:45pm

Thunderbolt tech an Intel trademark, not Apple

The new Thunderbolt standard on upcoming MacBook Pros may actually be a universal Intel standard, last-minute findings uncovered. Even with an Apple-styled logo, the expected Light Peak technology is now known by MacRumors to be a registered Intel trademark, suggesting that it won't be Apple-exclusive. Apple provided key input on Light Peak and may have been instrumental in accelerating the launch.

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Apple's Light Peak possibly called Thunderbolt

02/23, 8:25am

Leak shows Apple's Thunderbolt IO and 13-inch MBP

Apple's possible plans for Light Peak may have been corroborated by a spate of leaks on Wednesday. Box shots for fscklog have shown a technology nicknamed Thunderbolt that would provide "high-speed I/O" and piggyback on the Mini DisplayPort connector. An accompanying photo of a 13-inch MacBook Pro still in its protective wrapper has shown the connector being virtually identical to Mini DisplayPort but with the Thunderbolt logo nearby, although a rumored third USB port was nowhere to be seen.

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Rumor: white MacBook gone, 13-inch MacBook Pro going Core i3

02/22, 7:05pm

Late rumor has white MacBook gone, Air taking over

Apple's upcoming MacBook Pros could herald the end of plastic MacBooks in the lineup, an uncharacteristically detailed rumor posited on Tuesday. The company is reportedly confident enough in the 11-inch MacBook Air that the ultraportable would replace the white MacBook entirely. The 'reliable' MacGeneration sources understood that Apple wanted to trim the number of 13-inch systems down.

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Intel Light Peak event on Thursday stokes MacBook Pro rumors

02/22, 5:35pm

Intel Light Peak event lines up with Apple rumors

Intel on Tuesday said it would have a special event on Thursday to kick off the launch of a "new technology that is about to appear on the market," hinting at Light Peak in computers. The news will include both a San Francisco press brief as well as one at its Santa Clara campus that will include technology demos. While it didn't name Light Peak explicitly, the company just recently acknowledged that the interconnect was ready to be used.

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Speculation: iPad 2 mystery port is Light Peak

02/21, 4:20am

Plausible theory with new Macs, Light Peak inbound

Speculation surrounding the mystery port on early iPad 2 case designs has been circulating the blogosphere since the first cases based on leaked iPad 2 design schematics started appearing on the net. One interesting theory from the team at Macrumors is that the port could in fact be for the forthcoming Light Peak high-speed connectivity technology, co-developed by Intel and Apple. Macrumors bases its hunch on the buzz surrounding the launch of Light Peak on upcoming Apple Macs, which are expected to make an appearance as soon as this week. Further, Light Peak prototypes have been using a hybrid USB 3.0 connector that could appear similar to a standard USB port.

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Apple may unveil Light Peak under new name

02/20, 12:50am

Light Peak may get Apple intro soon

Apple is due to unveil its use of Light Peak soon, a rumor late Saturday suggested. Intel's 10Gbps peripheral interface is due to be made public by Apple soon but would get a different name inside the Mac. The CNET tip didn't confirm whether or not it would be part of the new MacBook Pros coming soon.

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Intel says Light Peak is ready to go, fuels Apple rumors

01/08, 9:20pm

Intel says Light Peak is already available

Intel in an interview late Friday revealed that Light Peak was finished and ready to be used. Architecture Group head David Perlmutter confirmed rumors that the company would use copper early on instead of true fiber optics and thus get the 10Gbps speeds faster than first thought. He wouldn't tell IDG's interviewer which companies were the first supporters and when complete products were shipped, but was optimistic for the uptake.

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Intel may have copper Light Peak as stopgap for early launch

12/13, 3:05pm

Rumor has Intel using copper Light Peak

Intel may be rushing a stopgap version of Light Peak to make an early launch, a tentative rumor hinted late last week. The company would allegedly switch from the technology's signature fiber optics to copper wires for its first incarnation. The CNET tip has it still reaching the promised 10Gbps peak transfer speeds.

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Apple patent could show plans for Light Peak adoption

11/30, 12:20pm

Company rumored as early Light Peak adopter

A newly-published patent application may suggest some of Apple's plans for Intel's Light Peak technology. Originally submitted in July, the document is titled Power Adapters For Powering And/Or Charging Peripheral Devices. "More particularly," Apple notes, "the present invention relates to improved techniques for powering and/or charging peripheral devices through a data transmission line."

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Debunk: SSD MacBook Pro rumor is false

11/29, 11:45am

MacBook Pro all-SSD rumor discredited

Electronista, like many others this week, received a rumor from a podcast (which we won't link to) that claimed to know the MacBook Pro will get a major redesign that would drop optical storage and move to an all-SSD lineup like the new MacBook Air with Intel's Light Peak for interconnects. It claimed that the system would ship in April with a new Final Cut Pro update. Unfortunately, this rumor simply isn't true.

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Intel confirms Sandy Bridge launching at CES

11/15, 10:55pm

Intel says Sandy Bridge to show at CES

Intel tonight sent out an invitation confirming that it would launch its Sandy Bridge processors at its CES keynote on January 5. PC Client Group general manager Mooly Eden will show the chips, now badged "second generation Intel Core processors." One of these will be the "world's fastest processor," the invite said.

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Intel Light Peak rumored launching early, Apple a candidate

11/03, 11:25pm

Inte Light Peak may get early debut, Apple first

Intel's Light Peak technology may be launching much earlier than expected if a slip tonight is an indicator. Despite talk of it not showing in computers until 2012, a contact aware of the development of the fiber optic technology said the first products with Light Peak would ship in the first half of the year, and likely in the earlier part of that period. Talking to CNET, the purported insider didn't name the company or the type of products involved.

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Intel sees computers carrying Light Peak only in 2012

09/16, 11:15am

Intel doesn't see Light Peak ready for two years

Intel at the tail end of its Developer Forum said it didn't expect Light Peak to be shipping in computers or other devices until 2012. The chipsets to drive the fiber optic data link will be ready by late 2011, but system builders are unlikely to have complete systems that year. The remarks push back the technology back a year later than initially suggested, although Intel hasn't attributed any delays to the new schedule.

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Intel develops first photonics-based, 50Gbps chip

07/27, 3:05pm

Intel chip uses lasers to hit record speeds

Intel provided a peek at the future of processors today by revealing the first instance of a chip using complete photonics to send data. Four lasers in the prototype convert light into data at about 50Gbps, or "many" times faster than wired connections. The rate, about 6.25GB per second, would be enough to send an entire 720p movie in one second.

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Light Peak demo shows dual HD video streaming

05/04, 12:10pm

Light Peak can relay two video feeds at once

Intel used a new European research event today to show a working example of its Light Peak transfer standard on a notebook. The Brussels-based test partly reflect demos conducted in the past but showed the portable streaming both the video feed of the screen's desktop and two HD video feeds at the same time. Neither suffered visible lag compared to what was shown on the notebook's own display.

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Intel: Light Peak may replace USB 3.0, due 2011

04/14, 6:45pm

Intel suspects Light Peak will take over

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.

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NEC develops 16Gbps link usable for USB 3.0, more

02/17, 10:10am

NEC USB 3 controller triples in speed

NEC today said it has developed a new chipset whose bus speeds could more than triple the speed of USB 3.0. By adding a delay to the feedback signal that becomes linked to the data rate, the company says it has conquered the interference that plagues very high speed data and provided considerably more headroom. It expects that USB 3.0 or a similar technology could reach 16Gbps, or about 3.3 times faster than the peak 5Gbps of the official spec.

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Intel CEO highlights 3D tech, Light Peak, smartphones

01/08, 12:30am

Exec forecasts future "smart homes"

Intel CEO Paul Otellini, speaking at a CES keynote, addressed a variety of current and upcoming trends such as 3D video, smartphones, apps, and the company's new Wireless Display Technology. The executive predicts that 3D -- the dominating topic this year at CES -- is the next big thing that will gain popularity in consumers' homes.

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NVIDIA: Intel delaying USB 3.0 chips until 2011

11/04, 3:50pm

NVIDIA blames Intel for delaying USB 3

Intel may have stalled adoption of the USB 3.0 standard for as long as two years, NVIDIA spokesman Brian Burke says. Following an apparent PC vendor leak which claims Intel won't have any USB 3.0-capable chipsets of its own until 2011, Burke tells TGDaily that NVIDIA has learned the same news. He contends that Intel has held the industry back by creating a near monopoly in demand for its chipsets but refusing to provide significant updates.

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Intel holding off on USB 3.0 until 2011?

10/22, 12:45pm

May slow adoption of important tech

Intel has postponed its support of USB 3.0 until 2011, a new report claims. The information is said to come from a senior technology manager at a "top tier PC maker," who says that Intel chipset teams are more focused on supporting the current Nehalem platform, as well as transitioning to 5GHz PCIe 2.0. "They need to prioritize their time and resources on a whole host of things and have to consider the compelling needs for USB 3.0 now versus 18 months later," says the manager.

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Light Peak to be in mass production by early 2010?

10/08, 8:35am

Intel Light Peak cabling may come early

Intel's fiber optic Light Peak interconnect standard could be ready sooner than commonly expected, based on plans from one of the company's key suppliers. Foci Fiber Optic Communication said to CNET on Thursday that it will start mass producing both the internal cables as well as Light Peak-based, USB-like cables at the start of 2010. Production on such a level is frequently, though not always, an indicator that companion hardware will arrive in a similar timeframe.

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Apple not directly behind Light Peak?

09/30, 8:10am

Apple less involved in Intel Light Peak

A counter-rumor today claims that stories of Apple creating Light Peak for Intel are false. The unnamed sources for CNET believe that Intel had already been developing the technology and that the semiconductor firm had simply asked Apple for feedback as part of its usual requests for outside input. Apple's specific influence isn't explained, but its tendency to ask for features "nobody else does" helped drive the technology, according to the tips.

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Intel's Light Peak an Apple-created technology?

09/26, 7:00pm

Intel Light Peak made just for Apple

Intel's recently unveiled 10-gigabit Light Peak connection standard was actually created at Apple's specific request, according to a major leak. While pitched at IDF as an Intel-made design, the fiber optic connection is now said to have been the direct result of talks between Apple founder Steve Jobs and Intel chief Paul Otellini. Engadget claims that Apple wants a single, high-speed connection standard that would not only take the place of FireWire or USB but also the video and Ethernet signals.

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Intel Light Peak may give iPods 10Gbps sync

09/23, 2:40pm

Intel Light Peak shown at IDF

Intel used a presentation at IDF to unveil Light Peak, a new interconnect standard for PCs. As implied by the name, the technology uses fiber optics instead of wires to transfer data and consequently has much more bandwidth. Even in its first generation, it's expected to transfer at about 10 gigabits per second, or over 20 times faster than USB 2.0; it could transfer the entire contents of a typical Blu-ray disc in about 30 seconds if working at top speed, Intel claims.

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