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Upcoming Sony VAIO may include Thunderbolt port

The rumored Thunderbolt-equipped VAIO reported back in March is supposedly back with visual proof of the latest Intel high-speed interface

The Intel Thunderbolt port is currently only available in the 2011 lineup of MacBook Pros, so it is tough luck for PC users looking to take advantage of the lightning-fast interface. Fortunately, new rumors are claiming that Sony may be including the Thunderbolt port into an upcoming VAIO laptop.

According to sources close to Engadget, a Thunderbolt port can be seen in a supposedly official snapshot of an upcoming Sony notebook. Perhaps more interesting, however, is that the port could be a combination USB and Thunderbolt port. In the new Macbook Pros, the Thunderbolt interface shares the same port as the Mini DisplayPort interface. Of course, Mini DisplayPort is not widely used outside of Apple products, so it would make sense for Sony to pair Thunderbolt with the more common USB port instead.

Unfortunately, Engadget notes that the USB port may not be the best choice. “USB connectors are not general purpose connectors and are not designed to be used in support of other technology applications or standards as combo connectors,” said Intel last summer in the USB Implementers Forum. How Sony may be planning to implement Thunderbolt into the same port as USB is still a mystery.

Another valuable mention is the Sony VAIO laptop itself, as it is reportedly the same notebook that was leaked back in March. The model will supposedly launch with a Core i7 processor, HDMI 1.4, and USB 3.0. The notebook will also be able to connect to a stationary secondary component for added discrete graphics, Blu-ray burner, and even more ports, essentially turning the notebook into a desktop replacement. Exactly when this VAIO will ship is anybody’s guess, but previous reports hinted at a summer 2011 release.


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Allen Ngo, 2011-05-18 (Update: 2018-06-28)