An Intel manager tweeted and then removed an image exposing some details about the Thunderbolt 5 in development, including the fact that Intel is attempting to quadruple the current Thunderbolt bandwidth limitations to 80 Gbps.
Gregory Bryant, the Intel Client Computing Group’s EVP and GM, published a tweet early Sunday that sparked discussion over Thunderbolt’s future as a communications standard. During a visit to Intel’s Israel Research and Development Center, the manager provided four photographs, but one of them was surreptitiously deleted.
Despite the fact that Thunderbolt isn’t mentioned on the poster, Bryan claims in his tweet that the lab tour was about Thunderbolt. The billboard looks to be promoting Thunderbolt 5, given the near closeness of Intel’s Thunderbolt and USB standards, which allows the Thunderbolt 3 specification to be incorporated in the USB 4 standard.
According to the poster, the connection is “designed to complement the existing USB-C ecosystem,” indicating that Intel would continue to use the USB Type-C connection.
On the poster, the use of “new PAM-3 modulation technology” is highlighted in a unique fashion.
When using NRZ coding, the data line transmits one bit at a time using an electrical signal that alternates between two states. Pulse-Amplitude Modulation 4 (PAM-4) is an option that specifies how two bits can be broadcast at the same time, with the number 4 referring to the number of possible bit pairs.
In PAM-3, a data line can be in one of three states: 0, +1, or -1. The system is informed of a three-bit group via a transmission pair, which is roughly 50% more efficient than NRZ.
Thunderbolt 5 should potentially provide consumers much of the same advantages as Thunderbolt 3, including increased power, video, Thunderbolt networking, and fast bandwidth. Thunderbolt 5’s enhanced bandwidth from 40 to 80 Gbit/s enables quicker file transfers and greater data interchange between connected devices with fewer restrictions.