USB 3.1 Coming Next Year – Features Double The Speed And Reversible Ports


Digitimes reports that USB 3.1 capable products will begin to ship in the first half of 2015. Which is in part due to the backing of companies such as Microsoft, Intel and Apple.  In addition, official bodies in the European Union as well as China have approved the verification procedures for USB 3.1 which should help the technology come to market even sooner.

USB 3.1Among the first to adopt this new USB standard is Apple which is reported to ship USB 3.1 capable MacBook Notebook products next year. Adata has pledged early support for the new standard as well, promising to have USB 3.1 capable storage devices in the first half of next year. The company will showcase a number of flash drives with the new standard at CES, early next year.

USB 3.1 Coming Next Year - Features Double The Speed And Reversible Ports

USB 3.1 promises several significant improvements over USB 3. The new standard offers twice the speed of USB 3 at 10Gbps, matching Intel's first generation Thunderbolt technology. In addition to the improvement in speed there's also an improvement in power delivery. USB 3.1 ports will be capable of delivering up to 100W of energy. Finally USB 3.1 will also feature universal reversible ports dubbed Type-C. This was a long time coming as Apple had this idea early on with their Lightning connector. It should make it considerably more convenient to connect USB 3.1 capable storage devices and peripherals.

According to Fudzilla desktop Skylake-S chipsets will not  include native support for the new standard. However motherboard makers will be able to add USB 3.1 functionality via third party controllers. The new Skylake-S processors are scheduled for the second half of next year along with the new 100 series chipset. The new CPUs boast significantly improved CPU and GPU performance according to leaked benchmarks.

All things considered, USB 3.1 represents a significant evolutionary step in the technology's capability and features.  Which makes it slightly surprising that it wasn't given the USB 4.0 nomenclature instead.