Apple has so far been the only PC maker to support Intel’s high-speed Thunderbolt interconnect, but Windows PC users will be able to get in on the fun soon enough: Acer and ASUS have announced that they will ship computers with Thunderbolt ports starting next year.
Intel’s Mooly Eden demonstrated a Windows-based PC transferring files at 700MBps from an Intel SSD during the company’s Intel Developer Forum, according to IDG News.
Both HP and Sony had claimed early support for the nascent standard, but HP later changed its mind and decided to stick to USB 3.0. Sony did end up using the tech in its updated Vaio Z ultraportable, but used a proprietary implementation that only works with a special GPU and Blu-ray equipped docking station. With no support outside Cupertino and few peripherals shipping, we wondered whether Thunderbolt would gain wider adoption.
That’s where Acer and ASUS come in. Both companies, which are working on new ultrabook models to ship next year, say they will ship PCs with Thunderbolt next year as well. The manufacturers will likely use new Cactus Ridge controllers announced by Intel this week, which are believed to offer a cost advantage over current Thunderbolt chips. Those controllers should be available in the second quarter next year—the same time that Intel's Ivy Bridge platform launches.