USB4 2.0 will double speeds to 80 Gbps

It seems the USB Promoter Group has decided it's done falling behind Thunderbolt technology when it comes to raw speed, as a new specification of USB4 has been announced which will double the current maximum bandwidth of existing USB4 (and Thunderbolt 3/4 devices) to an unprecedented 80 Gbps. This new standard hasn't been officially named yet, but it's being tentatively called USB4 2.0 by commentators.

Here's hoping that it doesn't end up like USB 3, calling it USB4.1 Gen 1 or something.

“Once again following USB tradition, this updated USB4 specification doubles data performance to deliver higher levels of functionality to the USB Type-C ecosystem,” said Brad Saunders, USB Promoter Group chairman. “Solutions seeing the most benefit from this speed enhancement include higher performance displays, storage, and USB-based hubs and docks.”

What's extra good to know about this new standard, is that existing USB4 cables should be able to handle the additional bandwidth, if they're high enough quality, that is. Better yet, USB4 2.0 has the potential to allow existing USB 3.2 devices that can hit 20 Gbps, could go higher too. It's not yet clear how this is achieved, but it's a tantalising hint of the future potential of USB4.

More details about this next-generation of USB technology and standards are coming in November, so watch this space. We won't see actual USB4 2.0 devices until next year at the earliest, but once the spec is out there, existing devices may begin to adopt it far sooner.

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