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USB 3.2 standard promises 20Gbps speeds over existing Type-C cables

An upcoming revision of the USB standard, USB 3.2, should in some cases dramatically boost transfer speeds over Type-C cables — hinting at a likely upgrade path for Apple's future Macs.




USB 3.2 connections will offer two lanes operating up to 10 gigabits per second, the USB 3.0 Promoter Group said on Tuesday. Both the originating and target devices must be 3.2-compatible, but the Type-C cable in between can be an existing 10-gigabit one.

The new standard is in a "final draft review phase," and should officially debut by September.

Apple is notably a member of the Promoter Group, making it likely to be an early adopter. The company has often been quick to adopt new connection standards, including Thunderbolt and USB itself. The 12-inch Retina MacBook was one of the first computers to ship exclusively with USB-C.

Apple could theoretically add USB 3.2 to the iMac Pro, coming in December, which will have four USB-C/Thunderbolt ports. Beyond that though the company will probably have to wait until 2018, since it has already done 2017 refreshes of the iMac, MacBook, and MacBook Pro.