USB 2.0 is currently rated at 480Mbps, but real world throughput
is rarely above 35MB/s due to protocol overhead. This is now a major
problem as many devices such as keyboards and monitors now feature
built-in USB hubs, which provide additional downstream USB ports.
However, bandwidth is still limited by the single upstream connection
to the computer.
This may not be a critical issue for rarely used devices, but it
is a major concern for those who depend on USB connections for
headsets, webcams, and data transfers. Many new motherboards
now come with USB 3.0 ports, but limited
PCIe bandwidth on the motherboards mean that there are usually
only a few SuperSpeed ports, leaving early adopters in the cold.
VIA Technologies has unveiled its VL810 SuperSpeed Hub Controller,
the industry’s first integrated single chip USB 3.0 hub that
support one upstream and four downstream ports. It is built on a 80nm
process, which is not unexpected considering many USB 2.0 hubs are
built on a 180 or 130 nm process. Expect the new chip to be used in
next generation computer monitors and keyboards.
"The growing emphasis on high-definition multimedia content
is placing increasing demands on current data transfer technologies,"
said Richard Brown, Vice President of Marketing for VIA
Technologies. "SuperSpeed USB not only makes transferring HD
video files, high pixel count digital photos, and backing up hard
drives quick and easy, but VIA's new hub controller allows consumers
to get the most out of the technology by expanding the capacity of PC