Will Intel start rolling out Thunderbolt more widely in 2012?

Will Intel start rolling out Thunderbolt more widely in 2012?

Summary: Intel and Apple introduced Thunderbolt technology with much fanfare earlier this year, but since then the number of products shipping with the new super-fast interface has been limited to new Macs and a handful of peripherals. According to a DigiTimes report, that could change in a big way next year, as the site claims that some big PC names plan to introduce Thunderbolt support in their products in 2012.

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TOPICS: Mobility, Hardware, Intel
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Intel and Apple introduced Thunderbolt technology with much fanfare earlier this year, but since then the number of products shipping with the new super-fast interface has been limited to new Macs and a handful of peripherals. According to a DigiTimes report, that could change in a big way next year, as the site claims that some big PC names plan to introduce Thunderbolt support in their products in 2012.

In particular, Asus and Sony are named in the report as PC makers who will be rolling out Thunderbolt support for their systems. In addition, component maker Gigabyte is expected to release a Thunderbolt-based motherboard in April 2012 to differentiate itself from the competition. Because Intel has supposedly revealed to its partners that it will fully launch Thunderbolt in April, we could also potentially see more announcements at CES.

I've contacted an Intel rep to find out the company's response to this report, but have received no reply yet. (Not surprising, considering that most tech companies are dormant during this holiday week.)

Are you excited to see Thunderbolt possibly expand its footprint in 2012? Let us know in the Talkback section.

Topics: Mobility, Hardware, Intel

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Talkback

10 comments
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  • I would be if I thought it would be the optical incarnation

    not the current lame copper incarnation apple latched on to.
    Johnny Vegas
    • RE: Will Intel start rolling out Thunderbolt more widely in 2012?

      @Johnny Vegas how about something worth discussing, rather than a lame attack on Apple?
      Rick_Kl
    • RE: Will Intel start rolling out Thunderbolt more widely in 2012?

      @Johnny Vegas
      Are you complaining that this standard will not last forever and ever, or that even though it is the fastest I/O interface in the world right now, it's just not fast enough for you? Or perhaps more likely, that Apple had something to do with it?
      Tigertank
  • Well I do notice a difference with optical cables?!?

    I mean interconnecting my Home Theater PC via optical sounds better than via analog.

    I thus suppose an optical interface to computers would somehow be free from the limitations and vagaries of a copper transmission line?

    Please note the absence of brand(ing) in an attempt to focus on the pure technology.

    [i]~~~~~~~~~~
    Art for art's sake.

    Vive la difference!
    {French proverb}[/i]
    WinTard
  • Compatibility

    Superior or not ... more expensive or not ... the physical plug compatibility of USB 3.0 could be difficult to overcome. Bad enough to replace the main PC but having to ditch all one's old peripherals as well means a clean sweep. Ouch!

    The disk products I've seen are so expensive that I could buy a whole new server! In any event I've gone SSD for work in progress and a cheap low powered server for backup.
    jacksonjohn
    • RE: Will Intel start rolling out Thunderbolt more widely in 2012?

      @johnfenjackson@... USB, ethernet and PCIx can be ferried across Thunderbolt links. If you have, for example, an Apple Thunderbolt display, it has several USB (2.0) ports and a GB Ethernet port, the traffic from which get ferried to the connected computer via Thunderbolt.

      Oh, and for those demanding optical, understand that the cost of running optical cable can be significant. Copper is an entirely pragmatic medium to use, especially considering the bandwidth it supports.
      bitcrazed
    • RE: Will Intel start rolling out Thunderbolt more widely in 2012?

      @johnfenjackson@... I'm 100% in agreement with you. USB 3 is half the speed of Thunderbolt yet it's backward compatible. My recently purchased laptop has two USB 2 sockets and two USB 3 sockets which means I can run 4 USB devices without needing a hub. If the USB 3 sockets were Thunderbolt then I'd have to either get a USB 2 hub - and lose the speed advantage of my USB 3 hard drives, or buy a Thunderbolt-to-USB adaptor; are such items available with USB 3 support? I suspect not as Thunderbolt is a competitor for USB 3. If Thunderbolt were ten times the speed of USB 3 then I'd seriously consider it but a mere twice? No thanks. I'll stick with compatibility.
      JohnOfStony
      • RE: Will Intel start rolling out Thunderbolt more widely in 2012?

        @john.foggitt@... has no one thought of a laptop that has say.... 1 TB port and 3x USB3 ports? If not, I got dibs.
        Gritztastic
  • RE: Will Intel start rolling out Thunderbolt more widely in 2012?

    I see a future IP lawsuit from apple coming on this one.... unless the motherboard's are going to be apple taxed. You know... say $800 each...
    Nate_K
    • RE: Will Intel start rolling out Thunderbolt more widely in 2012?

      @Nate_K
      That's not Apple's way. If Apple had legitimate IP in this (which I believe they don't) then they'd stop the technology from being used by anyone but themselves. If MS had IP in this then you'd get the $800 mother boards. Remember they'd tried to charge the price of a full OS for a few patents that manufacturers must sign NDAs to know.
      anono