PCs with USB 3.0 connections could start appearing by the end of the year, boosting throughput 10 times over USB 2.0 – fast enough to transfer 5 gigabits of data per second..
That’s according to a Nikkei Electronics Asia report (which I found via Microsoft product planner Alan Cheslow’s Twitter feed and blog).
The report said NEC – the leading USB 3.0 manufacturer so far – is going to begin large-scale production of USB 3.0 host controllers in September.
NEC expects USB 3.0 to quickly become mainstream. It’s anticipating 140 million PCs with USB 3.0 will ship in 2011, and 340 million in 2012.
We’ll have to see if Windows 7 supports the standard when the software’s released in October, though. Early word was that it may not be in the initial version; I’ve asked a Windows spokesman for a status report.
UPDATE: The answer from Microsoft is no, not at launch. A spokesman said via email that the USB 3.0 specification “was approved too late in the Windows 7 development lifecycle so it won’t be supported at launch. However they’ll consider it down the road.”