USB 3.0 and USB 3.1 Are Being Absorbed Into a New USB 3.2 Standard

Apple's own Lightning to USB-C cable

USB isn’t as straightforward as some might like, and it certainly doesn’t help when previous generations are suddenly absorbed into a newer one.

And that’s what is happening now. As was first reported on Tuesday by Tom’s Hardware, the USB Implementers Forum (USB-IF) has decided to make some changes. Specifically, USB 3.0 and USB 3.1 specifications are now considered USB 3.2. Here’s how that breaks down: USB 3.1 Gen 1 (which used to be USB 3.0 before another rebranding) will now be known as USB 3.2 Gen 1. Meanwhile, USB 3.1 Gen 2 will now be known as USB 3.2 Gen 2.

The names are changing, but the speed capabilities aren’t. USB 3.2 Gen 1 still has transfer speeds up to 5Gb/s, and USB 3.2 Gen 2 supports transfer speeds up to 10Gb/s.

That’s not all, though. What was formally known as USB 3.2 will now be known as USB 3.2 Gen 2×2. Why? Because the USB-IF’s decision is based on the fact it supports twice the throughput speed of USB 3.2 Gen 2.

Here’s a chart:

If you start seeing the rebranding out there in the wild, at least you have a fighting chance of keeping tabs on how this all shakes out. It’s worth noting that, at the time of publication, there are no USB 3.2 Gen 2×2 cables out there in the wild. That will probably change soon, but there is no word on when that will happen.

Hopefully none of this means Apple will change its mind about (eventually!?) adopting USB-C for the iPhone lineup.

[via Tom’s Hardware]