USB 3.0 connectors on display

Posted: April 18, 2010 in Uncategorized

USB 3.0 connectors made their into in the public light at CES. What will the new world of USB 3.0 look like? Remarkably similar to the old one, it seems.

At the recent Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Los Angeles, the new-look USB 3.0 connectors and sockets got a public airing.

First announced and demonstrated by Pat Gelsinger (Intel’s Senior Vice-President and General Manager of the Digital Enterprise Group) at the Intel Developer Forum (IDF) in September 2007, “SuperSpeed USB” utilises a parallel optical cable to deliver bandwidth at approximately 4.8 Gbit/sec which is around 10 times the speed of the current USB 2.0 standard.

Unfortunately the optical connectors weren’t on display at CES, just the electrical ones.

USB 3.0 optical connector

USB 3.0 optical connector

As USB 3.0 is designed to be backwards-compatible with both USB 1.1 and USB 2.0, the pin design is almost identical with existing USB plugs and receptacles. The five USB 3.0 contacts have been positioned behind the existing four USB 1.1/2.0 contacts, and the receptacle is deeper as a result of this – USB 3.0 plugs will be longer than existing USB plugs to reach the rear contacts.

USB 3.0 electrical plug

USB 3.0 electrical plug

USB 3.0 connector diagram

USB 3.0 connector diagram

The USB 3.0 specification is expected to be released in the first half of 2008, with peripherals hitting the market in 2009 or 2010.

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