USB 3.2 will bring Thunderbolt 2-like speeds to desktops this year
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The USB Implementers Forum has announced that it is bringing ultra high speed interconnect technology to the masses with its freshly minted USB 3.2 standard. The latest generation USB tech is capable of transferring data at a speedy 20Gbps, which puts it on a similar tier to Intel’s more expensive Thunderbolt 2 technology first introduced in 2014. The first PCs with the latest USB 3.2 controllers will ship later this year when the first motherboards will become available.
USB 3.2 will continue to use the same reversible USB-C connector that we have become increasingly familiar with over the past couple of years. As an added bonus, the new speeds will be achieved using existing cables so if you already have a USB-C cable you won’t need to upgrade it to enjoy the faster transfer rates. This has been achieved by adding dual lane operation support that is enabled with the latest controllers.
Incredibly, however, the USB Implementers Forum have managed to make things super confusing with regard to how the older USB 3.1 Gen 1 and Gen 2 technologies will be known, as it has renamed them to become part of the new USB 3.2 nomenclature. Moving forward USB 3.1 Gen 1 and USB 3.1 Gen 2 will be known as USB 3.2 Gen 1 and USB 3.2 Gen 2. The new faster speed will officially be known as USB 3.2 Gen 2 x 2. Why they didn’t simply call the latest standard USB 3.1 Gen 3 and call it a day, we will never know.