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12/30/2008
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SuperSpeed USB 3.0 Prepped For Storage

Symwave is expected to show off the specification for transferring data to and from external storage devices at CES in January.

Symwave claims that next month it will become the first to demonstrate the use of the new SuperSpeed USB 3.0 specification for transferring data to and from external storage devices.

Symwave plans to showcase the new spec at the Consumer Electronics Show, which runs Jan. 8-11 in Las Vegas. The semiconductor company said in a statement that the demonstration would highlight "streaming data to and from external storage devices at speeds previously unattainable." The demo is being done in collaboration with test, cable, component, and hard-drive manufacturers.

Version 1 of the next generation universal serial bus was sent in November by a group of tech companies, called the USB 3.0 Promoter Group, to the USB Implementers Forum, which is the managing body of the specification. The move effectively opened the high-speed spec to manufacturers of PC peripherals and other hardware.

USB 3.0 devices are expected to be available in commercial controllers in the second half of next year. A USB controller is an expansion card or hardware built into a PC motherboard for communications between the operating system and the peripheral device. Consumer products using the new spec are expected in 2010.

USB 3.0 is capable of transferring data at a maximum rate of 5 Gbps, which is roughly 10 times faster than the current USB 2.0 standard. A USB is a standard interface for connecting many peripherals to a PC. Devices that connect through a USB include mice, keyboards, personal digital assistants, joysticks, scanners, digital cameras, printers, personal media players, and external flash and hard drives.

USB 3.0 was unveiled in September 2007 at the Intel Developer Forum. The Promoter Group that developed the spec is comprised of Hewlett-Packard, Intel, Microsoft, NEC, ST-NXP Wireless, and Texas Instruments. Nonmember contributors include Advanced Micro Devices and Nvidia.

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