USB 3.0 – The Next-Generation Interconnect
Introduction What was the last time you were frustrated by technology's slowness? Let's look at a scenario where your flight from San Francisco to New York will take 3 hours. You're eager for the journey toward the terminal, however, you really would like to watch the latest season of your favourite show "House" which you've missed. A friend has sent you a message through Facebook about how impressed he was with a blockbuster movie that he saw last night , and you wish you could watch it on the long flight that you're about to take on. If I were in your shoes, I'd be thinking "if only I had the time to obtain all the media I need today". Today, it would take approximately 14 minutes to transfer an HD movie with 25GB of storage and almost nine minutes for transferring a television Show which is about 16GB, from a computer to your device for hand-held media. Thankfully, technological innovations are occurring at a rapid pace that allow users to access their desired content a lot faster. One of the most recent developments is the one that uses the most universal and widespread interface that is USB. USB 3.0 SuperSpeed is here and is expected to be the solution to these situations. The history of USB In this age of technological advancement and the internet massive amounts of information is being created, processed and consumed at the rate of a whirlwind; simultaneously massive storage technologies are also undergoing significant innovation. Storage is becoming less expensive and density is rising which is driving the growth of sharing content. Users no longer need to think about how to save the storage space of their hard drives. Visit:- The photographic life is considerably easier thanks to multiple storage cards to freely click as many pictures and swap cards out as they are full. These kinds of models are becoming increasingly popular not just in the business and professional setting, but also in the realm of consumer. Still cameras and camcorders are moving towards higher resolution and better quality images, resulting in a need for a faster connection to use the content. Such is the demand to speed up the process that a number of technology experts have come together to solve this problem in an elegant and seamless way. The USB Implementers Forum recognized this pressing need for the latest interconnect technology, and officially ratified the USB 3.0 specification in November of 2008. Comparative analysis with different Interfaces A variety of other standards for serial communication offer a data rate comparable to the one in USB 3.0. For example, PCIe Gen 2.0 has a data rate of 5Gbps and Serial ATA (SATA) III has a rate of 6Gbps. Although the USB 3.0 PHY architecture has its roots from PCIe, some significant distinctions emerge. In addition, the USB 3.0 PHY must implement an equalizer to compensate for cable loss. This allows USB cables to extend up to three meters. This is because the PCIe or SATA PHYs are not equipped with such an equalizer. The LFPS feature that was mentioned previously is not available on this USB 3.0 PHY. A PCIe link could comprise of many lanes (i.e. pair of transmit and differential lines) for increased bandwidth whereas USB 3.0 USB 3.0 link supports only one lane. Three interfaces are supported, but plug and play can be available only through USB. The SATA standard can support hot-plug but it depends of the SATA controller being using Advanced Host Controller Interface (AHCI) mode. PCIe is generally designed to allow peripheral functional card (such as graphic cards) directly onto the motherboard of a PC.SATA is a preferred interface preference for mass storage devices like hard disk drives and optical drives. This is why the majority of PCs integrate a SATA host adapter. USB on the other hand can be used as a general-purpose SuperSpeed or Hi-Speed bridge between the host and any other interface. USB 3.0 is also well-suited to be an alternative interface to transfer video, given the greater bandwidth. This could herald some interesting applications in the realm of digital living which include TV, STB, and monitors along with gaming consoles. One of the main advantages of USB in comparison to video interfaces like VGA DVI, DisplayPort, and HDMI is the ubiquitous nature that the connection. With HDCP 2.0 with USB as an interface, the protection of content can also be enabled by USB 3.0. Another advantage is that USB is royalty-free. USB Charging Charging is a key feature that is distinctive when looking at USB to other interfaces. USB is currently the preferred charging interface of choice for a number of countries. Charging using USB is a great option over having separate chargers for every device. Not only does it lower costs of manufacturing by restricting the use of specific chargers for a particular vendor, but it also has significant environmental impact in the long run.USB 3.0 hosts and hubs enable the battery charging schemes according to the USB Battery Charging Specification. The USB Battery Charging Specification currently specifies three charging modes: 1. Host Charger - A host charger is an USB 2.0 host that provides up to 500mA for a downstream port and incorporates charger detection. A Hi-Speed device is able to draw up to 900mA from the host charger. 2. Hub Charger - A hub charger is a USB 2.0 hub that supplies up to 500mA for a downstream port and supports charger detection. Its charging capability is like a host charge. 3. Dedicated Charger : A charger that is a device that provides power through a USB interface, but doesn't list the device. The charging capacity is limited to 1.5A.The specification also permits dead battery charging, which allows an inactive or vulnerable battery to use upto 100mA of power from a hub host until it is fully charged to an acceptable threshold. The distinct advantage of being able to charge over USB will be utilized in USB 3.0 devices. Conclusion: USB 3.0 is expected to become the most widely used solution for a variety of bandwidth-hungry applications. Its evolution from the highly successful USB 2.0 is fueled by increasing multimedia consumption demands and storage technologies with higher density. USB 3.0 is definitely a driver in the hype cycle, and will have to prove that it is able to get past the peak of inflated expectations leading into the mass market adoption. It's getting close to the time where you can access all the information you need while you are at the airport in less than a minute.  

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