DESPTITE LACK OF support from both Intel and AMD, it seems that USB 3.0 is set to be something of a hit. NEC has announced that it has so far shipped no less than 3 million of its USB 3.0 controllers and that it’s getting ready to ramp up production.
From next month, NEC will be producing no less than two million controllers a month, which means that we should start to see USB 3.0 support in just about every motherboard and notebook in the near future, with or without Intel’s and AMD’s blessings.
It took NEC six months to ship three million USB 3.0 controllers, but judging by its new production figures, the next three million will take less than two months to achieve. In contrast, it took NEC a year and a half to ship three million USB 2.0 controllers, although that time around both Intel and AMD did add support in their respective chipsets, along with Nvidia, from the very early days of USB 2.0.
Hopefully we’ll be seeing more advanced USB 3.0 controllers in the future with support for more than two ports, as it’s unlikely that we’re the only ones longing for a couple of front USB 3.0 ports on our systems. Some eager case manufacturers have already added USB 3.0 ports to recent case models, but these are just pass-through ports that attach to the rear ports on the motherboard.
With all of the major motherboard manufacturers and several notebook manufacturers now shipping models with USB 3.0 support, we’ll hopefully get to a level of penetration where USB 3.0 becomes a broadly accepted standard. For now USB 3.0 is still something of a niche solution, despite its obvious speed advantages, especially when it comes to external storage devices.S|A
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