Intel delays USB 3.0 support until 2011?

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Those looking forward to the wide rollout of USB 3.0 are in for a major disappointment, if an unnamed industry source talking with EETimes is to be believed. Pointing out that the new interconnect "won't get real traction until it gets integrated in the chip sets," the source claims that Intel won't be offering motherboard integration before 2011, so vendors who want USB 3.0 will have to turn to costly third party controllers.

The information is said to come from a senior technology manager at a "top tier PC maker," who explains that Intel chipset teams are more focused on supporting the current Nehalem platform, as well as transitioning to the 5 GHz PCI Express 2.0 specification. The chip maker may also be showing preference to its own optical cable interface, Light Peak, which can handle transfers up to 10Gbps and will enter mass production early next year.

Intel has declined to comment on these assertions. If true, it doesn't necessarily mean we won’t see any USB 3.0 support next year, but you probably shouldn't expect to see the new interconnect on cheap boards, which in turn means less USB 3.0 compatible peripherals as the market will simply be too limited to be profitable.

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