Intel’s Next Move for USB 3.0

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Intel’s Next Move for Superspeed USB 3.0
Chipmaking giant Intel has been the giant roadblock responsible for the slow mainstream adoption of the USB 3.0 interface. Other industry manufacturers have done all they can to move SuperSpeed integration along. We have adaptable USB 3.0 cards and external hard drives galore, but we have yet to find a native USB 3.0 port in your notebooks or computers.

It’s as if the very company that helped to develop USB has yet to truly support its 3.0 version. Even Apple’s CEO Steve Jobs named Intel’s absence in USB 3.0 development for Mac’s own lack of connectivity. However, it seems Intel could be on the verge of changing its attitude.

According to Digitimes, Intel will first release its Huron River platform at CES in January. This platform includes a SCH mobile chipset with GMA 500 graphics, 45 nanometer CPU and a wireless network. More importantly, Intel has a new codenamed Chief River platform in the works for a September 2011 mass production.

The technological architecture of Chief River will have what all USB enthusiasts have been dreaming of—native USB 3.0 support. Additionally, Chief River plans to use 22 nanometer Ivy Bridge quadruple core processors, all of which will be aimed for use in notebooks. The process of 22 nm technology will not only boost CPU performance but it can also cut back on energy consumption.

The recent development reveals that notebook makers will no longer have to count on third party manufacturers to make USB 3.0 happen. It will still mean, however, that we won’t be seeing a great influx of SuperSpeed devices for awhile, as it is likely that makers of portable devices and USB peripherals may be hesitant to put 100 percent of their production efforts into USB 3.0 unless they see Intel’s new platforms are made a reality. It’s just too bad that Chief River will have to wait until Intel finishes showing off Huron River’s capabilities.  One thing is for sure, USB 3.0 and Chief River should make for an interesting show at CES 2012.

What do you think of Intel’s recent developments? Are you excited by the promise of the Chief River platform? Weigh in with your opinion.

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