Intel is making thunderbolt royalty free and adding support for the interface, to entice device manufacturers to include the port in future PCs.
Expect to see Thunderbolt USB 3.0 port being a common feature in all future PCs. At least, that is what Intel is hoping for, and has even waived royalties to promote the same. That is not all as the chipmaker has also announced native support for the interface will henceforth be integrated into all its future processors.
Of course, the benefits are manifold, the primary of them being a huge bump in data transfer speeds. This, in turn, will allow for seamless syncing of content between your PC and say a 4K video camera, or solid state disk drives. A thunderbolt port will also come in handy in future when VR becomes more mainstream.
Also, with the capability to transfer copious amounts of data, a single Thunderbolt port can replace all other ports you need, including the one to transfer video to external display units. Devices makers will also have the liberty to design slimmer and hence lighter devices in future.
Thunderbolt 3, however, isn’t anything new, having been there since 2015. Apple already features Thunderbolt ports on its laptops and notebook devices. Unfortunately, while the inclusion of the high-speed port has helped Apple score a few brownie points with its user base, the port continues to lack a mass appeal.
It is this that Intel wishes to change for once and forever. The chipmaker that contributed in developing Thunderbolt with Apple is now eager to rope in Microsoft in the mix to make it more popular. Intel is hoping the Redmond giant with its wider reach in the PC segment stands an even better chance for popularizing Thunderbolt.
One reason why device manufacturers shrugged off from implementing thunderbolt in their devices is that it required the embedding of Alpine Ridge chips to make the most of the interface. That again called for extra investment. Other chipmakers too are expected to hardcode the support for Thunderbolt in their future chip efforts.
On the whole, it could be just a matter of time before Thunderbolt starts appearing in all forthcoming PCs.