Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in

Intel's 50Gbps Thunderbolt Successor by 2015

By - Source: PC World | B 43 comments

Intel is already working on a Thunderbolt successor.

Intel is reportedly working on a new interconnect technology capable of pushing data between computers five times faster than its just-launched Thunderbolt technology. Slated to arrive in 2015, it will be based on silicon photonics which combines silicon components and optical networking.

Wednesday during a press event in New York, Jeff Demain, strategy director of circuits and system research at Intel Labs, said the new tech will provide speeds of up to 50 gigabits per second over distances of up to 100 meters, whether it's a connection between PCs or between external drives, smartphones and tablets.

He also indicated that the new tech will also cost less to build because the components will be created using existing silicon manufacturing techniques. "We have to use the silicon manufacturing technologies we know," Demain said. "That's what the promise of the technology is. It is based on a silicon foundation."

Furthermore, Intel expects the new tech to help propel the successors of 1080p into consumer living rooms. As it stands now, image resolutions are slated to quadruple by the middle of the year, requiring a larger pipeline to push the massive loads of video data from set-top boxes and other devices to HDTVs. 50 gigabits per second should handle that kind of virtual haul.

During the presentation, Demain showed mock-up cables that will supposedly carry the data. Based on the current design, these will actually be thinner than cables currently used for USB 3.0 and Thunderbolt. The new tech will also follow Thunderbolt's lead and support both DisplayPort and PCI-Express protocols as well as other unnamed protocols.

After showcasing the cables, Demain also revealed working prototypes of the silicon chips that will be used to transmit and send the laser signals. These chips will eventually be merged together and reduced in size to fit within smartphones and tablets.

As Thunderbolt exists with USB, the new tech should exist side-by-side with Thunderbolt in some devices. "We see them as complementary. It's the evolution of these connectors and protocols as they move forward," Demain said. "Thunderbolt is more than a cable. It's a router chip that aggregates DisplayPort and PCI-Express."

Display 43 Comments.
This thread is closed for comments
  • 0 Hide
    woffle , April 28, 2011 9:23 PM
    "Intel expects the new tech to help propel the successors of 1080p into consumer living rooms. As it stands now, image resolutions are slated to quadruple by the middle of the year"

    Which tv's are going to have a resolution of ~5800x3300 by mid of the year?
  • -2 Hide
    dark_lord69 , April 28, 2011 9:30 PM
    They are talking about short distances like in your home... That's all fine and dandy but ISP's can't go anywhere near that speed.

    My ISP Connection:
    6 mbps

    This Technology:
    50,000 mbps

    I guess I just fail to see the need for this technology.
    OK, so you've got a new 4320p HDTV I don't think blue ray can do more than 1080p so a new player would need to be released and perhaps you could connect a PC or tablet to a computer for an insanely HD picture but as I said.. I fail to see a need for it and for TV's that are even HIGHER definition. I'm fine with my 1080p.
  • -1 Hide
    Anonymous , April 28, 2011 9:44 PM
    Oh great, all those people who bought all the thunderbolt hardware are going to have to upgrade to this new technology or be left behind.

    Oh, wait... No one bought into the thunderbolt technology to begin with...
  • 0 Hide
    cmartin011 , April 28, 2011 9:44 PM
    i would want more performance out of my 40in tv 2X resolution 4X the native refresh rate infinite contrast .01ms response time for just 2D picture. so that would be 3840x2160 240 new frames a seconds and near instant response i do not know if that requires 50 gigabytes a second i doubt it lol
  • 2 Hide
    burnley14 , April 28, 2011 10:12 PM
    Quote:
    combines silicon components and optical networking.


    I'm guessing this is the "Light" that they intended the original Light Peak to have?
  • 0 Hide
    wfs , April 28, 2011 10:18 PM
    coming to a screen near you soon (ok - maybe 10+ years)

    http://it-chuiko.com/gadgets/6339-super-hd-bbc-provedet-s-londonskoj-olimpiady-2012.html
  • 0 Hide
    subasteve5800 , April 28, 2011 10:22 PM
    I thought they already had this, then couldn't make it work so they swapped out the optics for copper and gave us Thunderbolt. I guess it saves R&D money if you can just continually announce the same technology.
  • 2 Hide
    mianmian , April 28, 2011 10:28 PM
    At 2015, Intel rep:
    Well, we find it too expensive to make a 50Gbps fiber link. Here is our new product that bundles 5 thunderbolt cables...
  • 0 Hide
    wfs , April 28, 2011 10:33 PM
    even better info about Super Hi-Def

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b7GYbJtB1no&feature=related
  • -1 Hide
    jimsocks , April 28, 2011 10:34 PM
    does intel even have usb3 yet?
    2015? BS!
  • 0 Hide
    someguynamedmatt , April 28, 2011 10:46 PM
    woffle"Intel expects the new tech to help propel the successors of 1080p into consumer living rooms. As it stands now, image resolutions are slated to quadruple by the middle of the year"Which tv's are going to have a resolution of ~5800x3300 by mid of the year?

    Which GPUs are going to support that resolution, is what I'd like to know. Actually, I guess it wouldn't be so bad as long as you didnt plan on doing any gaming whatsoever at that resolution...
  • 0 Hide
    mikem_90 , April 28, 2011 10:59 PM
    Agent K: "Guess I'll have to buy the white album again."

    Blue ray is already just slowly starting to get a bit more foothold, they want to usurp it already? Sheeeeesh.
  • 0 Hide
    stevo777 , April 28, 2011 11:55 PM
    filmman03well considering that we have the Canon 5D and 7D cameras, it isn't impossible, however probably unlikely this year or next.as far as the Thunderbolt, well that's good news for those Apple Fanboys, they will get to use the tech a year after its released w/ the new line of Mac's!


    I'm pretty sure he meant to say decade and not year. So, by 2015 when the newer Thunderbolt tech comes. Personally, I'll believe it when I see it.
  • 0 Hide
    stevo777 , April 28, 2011 11:57 PM
    Sorry, clicked on the wrong quote thingy. I meant to reply to woffle's comment.
  • 2 Hide
    dragonsqrrl , April 29, 2011 12:20 AM
    woffle"Intel expects the new tech to help propel the successors of 1080p into consumer living rooms. As it stands now, image resolutions are slated to quadruple by the middle of the year"Which tv's are going to have a resolution of ~5800x3300 by mid of the year?

    Dude, check your math. 5800x3300 isn't 4x 1080p, in fact I'm not even sure how you got those dimensions. I thought you may have just multiplied 1920 and 1080 by 4, but that still doesn't add up... lol. But in any case, 5800x3300 (19 megapixels!) is much more then 4x the current HD standard. 4x 1080p would be somewhere around 3840x2160, or around 8.3 megapixels. I guess the fact that no one caught this before me isn't really a good sign...
  • 1 Hide
    claec , April 29, 2011 12:21 AM
    woffle"Intel expects the new tech to help propel the successors of 1080p into consumer living rooms. As it stands now, image resolutions are slated to quadruple by the middle of the year"Which tv's are going to have a resolution of ~5800x3300 by mid of the year?


    1920x1080 = 2073600 pixels = 2.07 megapixels

    2073600x4 = 8294400 pixels = 8.29 megapixels

    Therefor, a new TV with 4000x2100 resolution = 8.4 megapixels, this is equivalent to 4x resolution increase.

    5800x3300 = 19140000 pixels = 19.14 megapixels = nearly 10x increase.

    Considering that Panasonic has a few TVs at 4000x2000, I think quadrupling 1080p is a viable option sometime this year.
  • 0 Hide
    claec , April 29, 2011 12:22 AM
    dragonsqrrlDude, check your math. 5800x3300 isn't 4x 1080p, in fact I'm not even sure how you got those dimensions. I thought you may have just multiplied 1920 and 1080 by 4, but that still doesn't add up... lol. But in any case, 5800x3300 (19 megapixels!) is much more then 4x the current HD standard. 4x 1080p would be somewhere around 3840x2160, or around 8.3 megapixels. I guess the fact that no one caught this before me isn't really a good sign...


    And bugger, I'm beat by a minute...
  • 0 Hide
    dragonsqrrl , April 29, 2011 12:29 AM
    TheMysticWizardOh great, all those people who bought all the thunderbolt hardware are going to have to upgrade to this new technology or be left behind.Oh, wait... No one bought into the thunderbolt technology to begin with...

    ... it literally just became commercially available, and Apple has already adopted it for their Mac Pro lineup. Don't you think it's just a bit early to cry fail?
  • 0 Hide
    dragonsqrrl , April 29, 2011 12:34 AM
    claecAnd bugger, I'm beat by a minute...

    lol...well, in any case you have the right idea.
  • 1 Hide
    shoelessinsight , April 29, 2011 12:35 AM
    Quadruple resolutions more likely refers to doubling both the vertical and horizontal resolutions of current televisions, which results in four times as many total pixels. So we'd be looking at 3840x2160, not that far off from the 2560x1600 monitors and televisions that already exist.

    But then again, how many people own a 2560x1600 monitor? They've been around for several years, but are too expensive for most people to consider. Any new television format is probably going to require nearly another decade for substantial adoption.

    Faster connections are always welcome, however, and people will inevitably find a use for the extra bandwidth. As long as it doesn't cost an arm and a leg, I say the sky's the limit.

    Edit: These comments move fast! Guess others beat me to the punch on the quadruple resolution topic.
Display more comments