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By | Chris Mellor 1st July 2009 09:54

SuperSpeed USB PCs to ship by year-end

2010 to be USB 3.0 year

Getting tired of waiting for backups to an external drive to complete? The first PCs using SuperSpeed USB could appear by the end of the year, with 2010 seeing the start of a mass rollout.

According to a Techon Nikkei report, Taiwanese PC manufacturers will be first off the mark.

SuperSpeed USB, or USB 3.0, increases the speed of USB more than tenfold, from the 2.0 specification's 480Mb/s to 5Gb/s. Demonstrations of it took place at a May 2009 SuperSpeed USB Developers Conference in Tokyo. SuperSpeed USB leapfrogs eSATA (external SATA) and its 3Gbit/s speed.

NEC Electronics of Japan is sampling a USB 3.0 host controller chip with volume production expected to commence in September at a rate of a million chips a month. The company estimates 26 million USB 3.0 PCs will ship in 2010, 140 million in 2011, and 340 million in 2012.

The much faster transfer rate will make the use of larger capacity external storage devices more practical and speed, for example, backup operations. A growing mass of SuperSpeed USB PCs will encourage PC peripheral manufacturers to adopt the new standard.

Suppliers like Buffalo, Drobo, Iomega, La Cie, Seagate and Western Digital, for example, could make moves here. Backing up tens of gigabytes of data to a terabyte-class external drive will seem lightning fast in comparison to today's tortoise-like slowness. ®

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