Speedy USB 3.0 spec quickly becomes a consumer reality

Expect parity in pricing with USB 2.0 and for USB 3.0 everywhere in 2011.

By Melissa J. Perenson, PC World |  Storage, USB 3.0

In my survey of hard drive makers, those that didn't already announce an intention to shift to USB 3.0 in the last quarter of 2010 (Iomega, LaCie, Western Digital), are transitioning to 3.0 by the end of first quarter of 2011. Watch for big box retailers to move USB 2.0 product off the shelves in the coming shelf reset that they do in the first quarter of the year, says Verbatim's Charles Klinker, director of marketing.

Meanwhile, at the CES show, PC and laptop support for USB 3.0 is clearly increasing. Many manufacturers offering Intel Sandy Bridge-based systems are also now adding USB 3.0 support. Whereas it was a challenge to find a laptop with USB 3.0 in 2010, you won't have near the same difficulty in 2011.

As for other devices -- such as cameras, camcorders and HDTVs -- be patient, advises Ravencraft. Regardless of what may or may not be discussed at the show, Ravencraft expects we'll be seeing more USB 3.0 soon.

"We always knew storage would be first out of the chute, along with PCs and laptops," he says. "There will be products that don't [rush a] move to 3.0-like keyboards, mice, printers--because they're not high data rate devices. But I think as we get to the back half of the year we will see more products come online, like HDTVs, cameras, and camcorders. They have that rich, high data rate content that needs to move quickly, and USB 3.0 can do that."

Check out our complete coverage of CES 2011.

Originally published on PC World |  Click here to read the original story.
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