Intel Thunderbolt 5 leaks early

Thunderbolt 5

An Intel executive has apparently leaked the company’s new Thunderbolt 5 technology by mistake. And the next generation transfer protocol has some good things in store for us.

Things like 80Gbps transfers and what not.

The chip giant had announced Thunderbolt 4 last year, with the technology finding its way in laptops based on the 11th generation Tiger Lake processors. However, unlike the interface that preceded it, it did not boost the maximum transfer rate, having been stuck at 40Gbps.

This came to light after Gregory Bryant, EVP and GM of the Client Computing Group at Intel posted a couple of pictures of his trip to the company’s R&D facilities in Israel yesterday.

Intel Thunderbolt 5 Leak

This picture was among the one included, and it had details of the upcoming protocol.

The photo has since been taken down.

But not before we learned that Thunderbolt version 5 will offer twice the bandwidth of the current protocol, and will also support the existing USB-C ecosystem. This is good news for consumers, as the first two generations of the technology used the same connector as the Mini DisplayPort.

Should help with the uptake, once Thunderbolt 5 launches.

That said, some manufacturers have chosen to completely ignore Thunderbolt, even with Intel making the hardware royalty free in 2019. Microsoft is one of them, as the technology is nowhere to be found on Surface devices.

The coexistence of different Thunderbolt and USB versions is a source of confusion for consumers, and apparently this complexity is one of the reasons why Redmond has not embraced the standard.

Let’s hope that this changes by the time the chip giant is ready to officially announce it.