Awaiting the fate of a Thunderbolt FireWire?

The last time we were versed you, for what Apple wants $ 50, selling the world’s first Thunderbolt-cable, and why it can not be used instead of wire from an external monitor, which plugs into the Mini DisplayPort. But what fate awaits this promising technology course: Will it put an end to the hegemony of the USB or repeat the fate of FireWire?

The current situation is very similar to the Thunderbolt start FireWire: Apple’s created and first presented in their original FireWire 400 computers, compared to USB 1.1 offers significantly faster data transfer could efficiently power the peripheral devices and the use of architecture, in which joined in chain of FireWire-compatible devices can “talk” to each other – in this case there was no need to connect them to one computer or hub.

Despite these advantages, the implementation of FireWire cost more, because every compatible device required to build a single chip. Besides, Apple would receive royalties for using its trademark logo, FireWire, and that has made USB more attractive and less expensive alternative to other manufacturers.

Later, Apple has reduced their appetite, but by this time began to receive widespread alternative to 4-pin FireWire version without power, called the «IEEE 1394″ (also known as i.Link by Sony). In parallel, the competition was a FireWire 400 USB 2.0, offered a comparable rate and maintain its cost advantage. And for a brand new 9-pin faster FireWire 800 standard required adapters for devices with a 6-pin FireWire 400 or 4-pin IEEE 1394.

Because of these inconveniences and additional costs FireWire (with all its benefits), unable to defeat USB – it is mainly used for the production of high-speed disk drives and in the growing industry of digital video and audio.

As far as I know, released at this point the device with Thunderbolt belong to the same category – and drives the device to work with audio / video – high bandwidth and low latency technology is ideally suited for these tasks. But the need to install each device in an additional controller and relatively expensive active cables can affect the plans for “world domination” creators Thunderbolt.

In addition, Intel than Apple mentions only two major manufacturers are considering the integration of Thunderbolt in their computers – it’s HP and Sony. The first decided not to deal with technology in the near future. And Sony has announced new Vaio Z notebook In which a controller will be Thunderbolt, but the engineers decided to use the Japanese company proprietary optical link based on a modified port USB 3.0.

Either way, skeptical users may well be right – Thunderbolt (with all its benefits) can not “take off” if the sole supplier of Apple computers equipped with these high-speed I / O port, and compatible accessories such as cables. Key role in disseminating Thunderbolt have to play it a third-party vendors.

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