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Apple is keeping it pricey with a $49 cable for its new Thunderbolt interface.  (Source: Ubergizmo)

  (Source: iFixIt)

Apple's Thunderbolt cable contains over 10 chips  (Source: iFixIt)
But this cable has chips, so it must be worth it!

Apple, Inc. (AAPL) is borrowing a play from Monster Cables offering a cable that's almost as pricey as the peripherals it plans to support.  The new Thunderbolt cable will retail for $49 USD.

Plugging in to the Mini Display Port of new MacBook Pros and iMacs, the cable offers support for "Thunderbolt", a new high speed communications standard from Intel Corp. (INTC).  With the first peripheral (a RAID drive bay from Pegasus) launching, attention has turned to this pricey little number.

IFixIt tore the white cable apart and found a pair of Gennum GN2033 chips hiding beneath the sheathing, with one on each connector of the cable.  In total there were also 10 other smaller tiny chips and an assortment of transistors, etc.

Gennum's webpage brags that its chip takes normal cables and offers "sophisticated signal boosting and detection functions required to transfer high-speed data without errors."

Of course nobody seems to know how much these chips cost so it's hard to say exactly how much profit Apple is pulling in off the cables.

Adoption is expected to be slow for the standard.  Like Apple's original Firewire standard, the price of the communications band (in this case the cable) offers a barrier for market entry.  It doesn't help that Hewlett-Packard, Company (HPQ) already abandoned plans for Thunderbolt, or that Sony Corp. (TYO:6758) has released a special version of the tech that relies on a modified USB 3.0 optical port.  

And there's the question of USB 3.0, which has already seen much more broad adoption.  USB 3.0 offers transfer speeds of up to 4 Gbit/s.  While only about half the speed of the current Thunderbolt implementation, that's still pretty blazing fast so the question remains how many customers will actually notice a difference.

To Monster Cables' credit, at least it only charges $29 for its "gold-plated" USB 2.0 cables, which it brags "rejects noise" and works to "maximize signal integrity."  Sound familiar?

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RE: Apple is Monster Cable
By Pirks on 7/1/2011 11:37:21 PM , Rating: 2
I have seen low-end Acer machines that are very plastic, do feel somewhat flimsy, and aren't all that aesthetically pleasing
So you just proved my point! You agreed that you get what you paid for! Jee Moto, I had no idea you'd heal so fast :)))
Macs don't compete on features...specs...or price. They compete based on the fact that it's an Apple product. Features, specs, etc. are irrelevant to that buyer
This is BEYOND DUMB, way way waaayy beyond dumb, this is insanity. Only a few really hardcore Apple freaks, totally brain damaged Apple freaks, buy Apple stuff just because of the logo. You think that ALL Apple customers are these kind of brain dead zealots which is why you look so funny and childish :))) You SERIOUSLY think all these hundreds of millions of guys and gals bought their MacBooks and iPods and iPads and iPhones JUST BECAUSE OF THE APPLE LOGO??!! You are totally unbelievably insane, you need to seek professional help, seriously. IF you REALLY think like that. Do you? Tell me you're pulling my leg.

Man, I know myself, and I know about a dozen of my friends who bought some Apple gear, one got Air, two got iPads, a few got iPods, NO ONE of them, NOT A SINGLE PERSON got their Apple stuff only because of the Apple logo. They tried it, they compared it with other hardware, and they chose them because they felt Apple's features and design beat the crap out of other products. IMPORTANT NOTE: all of them do not possess the full spectrum of Apple gear, i.e. most of them use Windows PCs everywhere, and laptops too, because they believe Windows laptops are better. What does it prove? It proves your total insanity, Moto. You are sick, you need professional help, really. You can't think all Apple customers are brain dead zealots. A fair chunk of them are but VERY VERY FAR FROM ALL.
You're either going to buy an Apple, or your aren't. That decision is made long before you go to the store/place the order, and nothings going to change it.
Lies lies lies. For most customers it's lies. Only minority is brain dead Apple fanatics, majority just likes Apple hardware and buys it for various objective reasons. Just go to Apple store and try to talk to some of the people about why they got what they got, why they didn't get non-Apple stuff, and you'll see that most of the answers won't be "because it's Appple", it will be more like "because Apple product such and such does this and that better for me"
because if you're going to buy an Apple product, it's because of the "magic" that Steve told you was in there. And you believed him
Nah, if I weren't using Apple hardware stuff at work for a couple of years I'd maybe believed you, but I know from my practical experience that you are lying. I know that Apple devices are still somewhat different from others, and most often this difference in features and design is what makes people buy it, not your "magic" fantasy. I mean yes, a few people buy because of "magic" but not all of them, and you still keep lying that ALL of them are like that. This is a serious problem Moto, I'll try to fix it, maybe I can carefully talk you out of your insanity, we'll see :))

"A lot of people pay zero for the cellphone ... That's what it's worth." -- Apple Chief Operating Officer Timothy Cook

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