Intel’s speedy hardware interface, Thunderbolt, has turned 10 years old. The company celebrated the connector technology’s 10th anniversary in a newsroom post today, which included a brief history of the standard and how it was designed to consolidate data, video, and power into a single, small connector for new levels of convenience and practicality. At the time of its introduction, Thunderbolt turned heads by its ability to transfer full-length, HD movies in less than 30 seconds and back up a year of continuous MP3 music playback in just over 10 minutes.
“Thunderbolt’s simplicity, reliability, and performance are important whether you are working or learning at home, or you are creating content or you are a gamer,” said Jason Ziller, general manager, Client Connectivity Division at Intel. “You can do all of those things with a single Thunderbolt connection.”
“Intel looks forward to continuing to work with the industry on innovation and adoption of Thunderbolt. We expect Thunderbolt will keep up with monitors as we look to 8K and 16K, external SSDs that are nearly doubling in speed every year, and much more.”
The current version of Thunderbolt, Thunderbolt 4, boasts four times the speed of the original (40 Gbps) and leverages the USB Type-C connector for ease of use and greater compatibility with thinner hardware. Intel points out that more than 1,000 computers and 1,000 accessories have been Thunderbolt-certified.