USB Type-C is getting even better now that it has Thunderbolt 3 – Intel’s transfer protocol. It aims to replace most existing USB cables like microUSB 2.0, USB 3.0, and more.
Intel’s Thunderbolt 3 is also known as “port nirvana”, which is capable of connecting to a plethora of devices to charge, connect displays, and transfer data. With transfer speeds of up to 40Gbps, a 4K video can be transferred in less than 30 seconds; that is twice as fast as Thunderbolt 2, and four times faster than USB 3.1 (only 10Gbps). On top of that, Thunderbolt 3 can simultaneously connect to two 4K displays at up to 60Hz, not to mention charging notebooks at up to 100 watts.
The first few laptops to hit the market with the new Thunderbolt-based USB Type-C would be Apple’s New MacBook, Google’s Chromebook Pixel 2, and Dell’s XPS lineup of laptops – XPS 12, XPS 13, and XPS 15. More products with Thunderbolt 3 are expected to arrive in 2016.
Intel’s Thunderbolt technology has been around for quite some time, but it isn’t being used very often. Most users who require (and can afford) the transfer speeds on Thunderbolt are professionals, making it a rather niche feature to have instead of a mainstream one.
The standard USB has always been everyone’s favourite, but it would be best to see more products ship with USB Type-C with Intel’s Thunderbolt 3 integrated into them. Hopefully, this would help push USB Type-C and Thunderbolt 3 to be the next standard features used on all applicable devices.