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Two leading makers of hard disk drives - Seagate Technology and Western Digital - said on Thursday that they would support the new interconnect technology unveiled by Intel Corp., the Thunderbolt. Both companies aim to provide solutions supporting the TB I/O tech in calendar 2011.

"Seagate will support Thunderbolt with our external GoFlex drives with in calendar year 2011," said Nathan Papadopulos, senior manager of corporate communications at Seagate.

Seagate was not among the companies, who openly supported the standard with Intel, Apple, WD and others. This fact makes the announcement even more important.

"Western Digital believes Thunderbolt technology will bring both new performance levels and simpler connectivity for consumers to access and enjoy their digital media in new and innovative ways," said Dale Pistilli, vice president of marketing at Western Digital.

Two of the world's largest suppliers of hard disk drives, who ship over 50% of the HDDs on the globe, endorse the TB technology from Intel. Although the two companies have not unveiled any actual products or timeframes, it clear that the standard has already been set on the market of external storage. Obviously, the Intel Thunderbolt technology will yet have to become successful among the end-users as currently it is available only on several models of notebooks.

Thunderbolt technology supports two low-latency communications protocols - PCI Express for data transfer and DisplayPort for displays. Thunderbolt technology works on data streams in both directions, at the same time, so users get the benefit of full bandwidth in both directions, over a single cable. With the two independent channels, a full 10Gb/s of bandwidth (something not truly needed for HDDs these days) can be provided for the first device in the chain of the devices. All Thunderbolt technology devices share a common Mini DisplayPort connector. Intel's Thunderbolt controllers interconnect a PC and other devices, transmitting and receiving packetized traffic for both PCIe and DisplayPort protocols and thus makers HDDs need to develop or use additional controllers to make their drives compatible with the TB I/O interface.

Tags: Thunderbolt, Seagate, Intel, WD, Western Digital, GoFlex

Discussion

Comments currently: 4
Discussion started: 02/25/11 05:41:24 AM
Latest comment: 02/26/11 04:43:33 PM
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1. 
How g*y is that ?!! INTEL f*rts and the others inhale

Well, if there are idiots that have no idea that even a RAID 0 array of the fastest HDDs CAN NOT reach the upper limits of a USB3 connection, and they're willing to PAY MORE for the motherboard AND the external enclosure because they BOTH have to support INTEL's Thunderf*rt, so let them. INTEL Israel must be able to support their 15,000$ a month salaries so there must be lots of idiots out there to buy Thunderf*rt.

INTEL can afford to not support the cheaper and COMPETING USB3 technology exactly BECAUSE there are idiots that would buy anything with the INTEL logo on it .
0 0 [Posted by: East17  | Date: 02/25/11 05:41:24 AM]
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lol East17 you have a specific issue with Intel Israel?
Are you living in Israel?
Every time you comment against Intel you also mention their Israeli division...I wonder why?
Maybe you have something against Israel too?
0 0 [Posted by: eltoro200  | Date: 02/25/11 02:21:45 PM]
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2. 
I think for storage, an extension of eSATA would be much better.
And for displayport... you just use displayport.

However I am glad of this because of low latency suport, which no form of USB supports.
0 0 [Posted by: CSMR  | Date: 02/25/11 06:49:17 PM]
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3. 
Intel looks like its putting all of its chips on Thunderbolt to succeed over USB 3.0 which is a stupid move if they are going to just bypass USB 3.0 and choose Thunderbolt as their standard instead. USB is already well est, millions and millions of devices use USB and the transition from USB 2.0 to USB 3.0 is effortless considering USB 3.0 is backwards compatible with USB 2.0. Where as Thunderbolt nothing is backwards compatible with it, because it's a new technology that will take Intel and its partners billions of dollars and many years to make it a standard technology. It would be diff if Thunderbolt was a new technology that nothing else competed against it, but considering you have USB 3.0 and SATA 6 on the market, Thunderbolt is going to be lost in a sea of competition transfer devices, which is why I think Thunderbolt will end up going the same way as Firewire in the end. User compatibility far outweighs transfer rates of speed in the consumer market as we have all seen with USB for many years now.
0 0 [Posted by: SteelCity1981  | Date: 02/26/11 04:43:33 PM]
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