Technology News: USB 3.0 Due Out
Have you even heard about USB 3.0 yet? If not, I am sure you will in the near future (besides reading this blog). Well, the 1.0 specification for the new technology has been out for almost a year now, so at some point there will be devices that support the latest version of the USB standard (nicknamed SuperSpeed USB).
According to this website (http://www.everythingusb.com/superspeed-usb.html), there are a number of ways in which USB 3.0 will be better than its predecessors. For one, it will be backwards compatible with both USB 1.1 and USB 2.0. Other improvements upon the USB 2.0 specification will be: higher transfer rates (theoretical maximum of 4.8 Gbps vs. 2.0s limit of 480 Mbps), more power available to devices, power management features, full-duplex data transfers (as opposed to the half-duplex of USB 1.1 and 2.0), and new connectors and cables for devices.
A couple of the drawbacks of USB 3.0 is that it will be more expensive than USB 2.0, due to the necessity of including USB 2.0 support (a separate interface for USB 2.0 is needed, rather than being included in the new connections), and there is not the wide-spread support yet for USB 3.0 that there is for USB 2.0. In coming months, there will most likely be devices and controllers that will be coming out that will aid in the increase of USB 3.0 but as of right now, even the newly released Windows 7 Operating System does not support USB 3.0 (most likely will be included in the first Service Pack).
Negative items aside, this will improve the performance of externally connected devices that require more than the existing USB 2.0 can provide. The biggest area that this will improve will be in the multimedia and data storage realms. Video will be more streamlined and audio performance will be enhanced. Large data transfers will take much less time and allow new devices to be put into use that it would be pointless to implement over USB 2.0 (such as large externally-connected RAID systems).
I am sure that it will take time for USB 3.0 to be more prevalent than USB 2.0, but once devices start coming out that take advantage of the higher throughput and power features, it will only be a matter of time. Similar to DVDs and CDs, I think that USB 2.0 will still be around for quite some time once USB 3.0 is available due to the nature of cost and usefulness. After all, how many more seconds are you going to save transferring a 100MB file onto a USB 3.0 flash drive than you will onto a USB 2.0 flash drive?
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