Intel today announced the availability of Thunderbolt technology, a high-speed PC connection technology that brings together high-speed data transfer and high-definition (HD) display on to a single cable.
Running at 10Gbps, Thunderbolt technology can transfer a full-length HD movie in less than 30 seconds. This Intel-developed
technology is coming to market through a technical collaboration with Apple, and is available first on Apple's new line of
MacBook Pro laptop computers.
The vision for Thunderbolt technology (formerly codenamed "Light Peak") is to move media faster, simplify connections between
devices, and foster new ways to build and use PCs. Combining high-speed data and HD video connections together onto a single
cable is instrumental to achieving that vision. Thunderbolt technology delivers this via two communications methods, or
protocols -- PCI Express for data transfer and DisplayPort for displays. PCI Express has the flexibility to connect to almost
any type of device, and DisplayPort can drive greater than 1080p resolution displays and up to eight channels of audio
simultaneously. Thunderbolt technology is compatible with existing DisplayPort displays and adapters. All Thunderbolt
technology devices share a common connector, and let individuals simply daisy-chain their devices one after another,
connected by electrical or optical cables.
"Working with HD media is one of the most demanding things people do with their PCs," said Mooly Eden, general manager, PC
Client Group, Intel. "With Thunderbolt technology, Intel has delivered innovative technology to help professionals and
consumers work faster and more easily with their growing collection of media content, from music to HD movies. We've taken
the vision of simple, fast transfer of content between PCs and devices, and made it a reality."
Thunderbolt technology is powered by an Intel controller chip, and uses a small connector suitable for mobile devices that
will be included in products supporting the technology. Several innovative companies have announced Thunderbolt
technology-based products, or currently plan to support Thunderbolt technology in upcoming products, including Aja, Apogee,
Avid, Blackmagic, LaCie, Promise, and Western Digital. Intel is working with the industry on a range of Thunderbolt
technology-enabled products including computers, displays, storage devices, audio/video devices, cameras, docking stations