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The PC world is quickly preparing for USB 3.0

News reports from Asia indicate PCs with USB 3.0 will be shipping to consumers before the end of 2009.

USB 3.0, with speeds 10 times faster than USB 2.0, will offer transfer speeds of up to 5 gigabits of data per second.  Manufacturers are expected to introduce a new generation of USB flash drives, external hard drives, and other devices that will make use of the significantly faster transfer speeds.

NEC Electronics is expected to lead the pack among companies adopting USB 3.0, with the company recently becoming the first to introduce a USB 3.0 controller.  The company began shipping host controller samples last month, and in September will begin manufacturing an expected one million units per month.

In 2007, Intel unveiled USB 3.0 during its Intel Developer Forum (IDF) conference, but was accused by AMD and NVIDIA of keeping the open host controller specifications a secret to create an unfair advantage against competitors.  Intel later released the open host controller specifications in November 2007, with companies expected about the increased speed of the technology.

There has been some talk about whether or not the PC industry will be ready for USB 3.0.  During the SuperSpeed USB Developers Conference, held two months ago in May, manufacturers outlined their aspirations to utilize the superior USB 3.0 -- devices also were shown to be faster than eSATA, which offers 3Gbits/s transfer speed.

NEC anticipates 140 million PCs will ship in 2011 utilizing USB 3.0, with that number expected to climb up to 340 million in 2012.  Microsoft Windows 7, which launches in October, will not support the standard at launch, but will add in support later.

Both home users and businesses will benefit by using the faster technology, with large-scale data backup becoming much faster thanks to the 5Gbit/s transfer speeds.  Expect external HDDs with increased storage capacity from Western Digital, Seagate, Iomega, and other companies specializing in storage.

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RE: Yay
By Byte on 7/3/2009 11:30:22 PM , Rating: 2
I'm pretty sure a driver is all that was needed, and it's backwards compatible so it won't be as bad. I just hated the days when I was in college and had to bring a tiny CD with me to load USB drivers to older machines. I just really like how USB2.0 nearly everything you can just plug in and it will work like magic.
This will pretty much obsolete eSATA too. eSATA is nice, but who needs a new special cable and only a small percentage of computers will have eSATA. It's also taking them a while to release powered eSATA, and I think it will only be able to power 2.5 disks, not enough for 3.5. Only one of my external drives have eSATA but i'll probably switch them all over to USB3 rather than dealing with eSata. USB3 will also be able to deliver almost a whole amp, 10x as much as USB2, maybe they can do something with that.

Also some dude named colton,, just emailed me saying USB3.0 will not help in any speeds. Quote: "In response to the usb article on dailytech. I see way too many uneducated comments on there. Anyhow.. you realize that most commercial harddrives today can only reach sustained speed limits of 50 - 70 megaBytes per second? I just did a test on my harddrive, which is a new WD Caviar, and it can only reach sustained speed of 57.3 megaBytes per second... If you do the math.., 480 megaBits per second for USB is 60 megaBytes per second.. It doesnt matter if usb 3.0 goes at 5 gigBits per second.. Thats 640 megaBytes per second.. Since a harddrive can only go so fast, usually in the 50 - 70 mB/s range, usb 3.0 is completely useless. Did you realize this before posting your comment? It is the same thing with the next version of serial ATA. The interface has the potential to run at massive speeds, but we are still limited by physical harddrive speeds."

He seems to have ran out of porn to watch to personally send me an email on what he did on his pocket calculator and faulty logic and no experience in real world tasks. I already sent him numbers from anandtech showing real world usb xfer rates, but he still lives in a world where his pocket calculator gives real world results. Maybe you guys can set him straight.

"There is a single light of science, and to brighten it anywhere is to brighten it everywhere." -- Isaac Asimov
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