Just what is “Thunderbolt”?

Simple put, it’s “New data transfer technology by Intel”

Read Intel Press release below:

“Intel Corporation today announced the availability of Thunderbolt™ technology, a new high-speed PC connection technology that brings together high-speed data transfer and high-definition (HD) display on to a single cable. Running at 10Gbps, Thunderbolt technology can transfer a full-length HD movie in less than 30 seconds. This Intel-developed technology is coming to market through a technical collaboration with Apple, and is available first on Apple’s new line of MacBook Pro laptop computers.”

Thunderbolt could compete with connector technologies such as USB, Firewire and HDMI (high-definition multimedia interface), which link PCs to external storage, audio devices and displays. Laptops and devices with USB 3.0 ports started reaching store shelves last year and offer data transfer speeds up to 5Gbps. Intel, however, is saying the Thunderbolt is complementary technology to USB 3.0 and others. Thunderbolt currently communicates with devices using PCI Express for data transfers and DisplayPort for displays, Intel said. All devices can connect to a PC using a single hub, reducing the need to have multiple connectors.

Thunderbolt is the fastest data transfer technology between host and external device yet!

Apple was the first one to sign-up for Thunderbolt, and few storage vendors like Western Digital, and others are expected to follow.

With Apple’s support, it looks like this technology is about to take off and pay big dividend for Intel! But do consumers really care whether it’s 5Gbps or 10Gbps? What do you think?

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