More speed, more pixels, more power, more protocols : this is why I want Thunderbolt 3 for Christmas
Thunderbolt 3 is out and it delivers more of everything. Getting it on my new mobile workstation along with new Thunderbolt external hard drives is at the top of my wish list for Christmas.
The new high-performance standard for connectivity builds on the USB Type C connector which is small and flexible. Flexible because it can support protocols other than the USB-C protocols. Thunderbolt leverages the connector which will bring more devices to the standard.
A key benefit will be the plethora of new products which will support and use the Thunderbolt port. The new standard will deliver 40 Gbps transfer speeds. That makes for great connectivity with external storage. Version 3 will also drive 2 external 4K displays at 60 Hz. It delivers more power to devices as well supporting 15W devices.
One of the uses for all that transfer performance is storage solutions - back up storage for mobile and fixed workstations, and project work-disks which will allow the transportability of projects while working in the office and then being gone on business. High performance external storage for work adds a greater dimension of flexibility to organizing my projects when I switch between the office, travel, and home.
Thunderbolt previously piggy-backed on the Mini DisplayPort connector. Now it is piggy-backing on the USB Type C connector. Thunderbolt will continue to deliver external graphics, and with the higher bandwidth, Thunderbolt 3 can drive 2 external displays each running at 3840x2160 and 60 Hz. This is a great capability for new Thunderbolt docking stations.
The PW Perspective:
Thunderbolt 3 is on new systems today and being added to more. The bandwidth levels are amazing and make backups and project work easier and faster than ever using external storage. The tradition of driving external displays continues to deliver benefits, especially for mobile workstation users. With Thunderbolt 3, external docking stations for mobile workstations will be nearly universal in their compatibility and accept almost any workstation.
But the big winners are customers like you and me who will spend less time waiting and more time working.