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Intel Working on Standardized Thunderbolt Docking System for PCs

VR-Zone reports that Intel is quietly working on developing a standard docking format for their upcoming Ultrabook platform. The new docking system would incorporate a Thunderbolt connector as well as what appears to be a proprietary connector as well.


The non-Thunderbolt port would reportedly be used for power as well as direct access for the Ethernet controller which is required to support technologies such as Intel vPro and Microsoft's Connected Standby.

Apple's own solution has been much simpler. Their Thunderbolt Cinema Display offers a single cable which splits into a Thunderbolt cable and a Magsafe power cable. The Thunderbolt cable carries USB 2.0, FireWire 800, Ethernet, and Video from your laptop to the monitor.


Unfortunately, that separate non-Thunderbolt docking connector in Intel's proposal would likely prevent it from being directly supported on the Mac. Still, any major adoption of Thunderbolt technology can only help industry acceptance and the proliferation of more accessories. Belkin has already announced their own Thunderbolt docking solution which works much like Apple's display.

Intel is aggressively pushing forward the concept of the Ultrabook which bears a close resemblance to Apple's MacBook Air. Ultrabooks are expected to be the hot product at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2012 which takes place in January.

Top Rated Comments

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31 months ago

They did it because like everything in the PC world, they are too lazy to get it right. They take the easy way out of everything and leave their customers with mediocrity.


Exactly, skimp out on quality just to get the product on the market faster.

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Apple would probably sue them if they did something similar.


But apple is licensing Thunderbolt from Intel. They cannot sue the people they license the tech from. :)
Rating: 18 Positives
31 months ago

They did it because like everything in the PC world, they are too lazy to get it right. They take the easy way out of everything and leave their customers with mediocrity.

Actually that couldn't be further from the truth.

However I can understand why maintaining that line of thinking fulfills your emotional needs to validate your choices. Nice work :)
Rating: 17 Positives
31 months ago
Question, why is having two separate plugs "simpler" than having but one? Common logic would state the contrary.

That said, Apples solution is certainly simple enough. I just don't get what you're going after here.

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Big bulky cables like that are not the way to go. Apple proved that.


And yet every single Apple adaptor (more or less) is just that: big and bulky (comparatively). Which way is it? You can't have both.
Rating: 14 Positives
31 months ago

Big bulky cables like that are not the way to go. Apple proved that with the Thunderbolt connector on today's Macs. Having two cables there is not smart, why they did not consolidate into one cable makes no sense.


They did it because like everything in the PC world, they are too lazy to get it right. They take the easy way out of everything and leave their customers with mediocrity.
Rating: 13 Positives
31 months ago
Why are we still using cables? Why not try to come up with some super-high-speed close range wireless connector?
Rating: 13 Positives
31 months ago

They did it because like everything in the PC world, they are too lazy to get it right. They take the easy way out of everything and leave their customers with mediocrity.


What a load of crock. First, i fail to see the direct benefit of a split solution. In fact, come to think of it, i can't see it at all. From a cable point of view it just seems like more of a mess. Second, you're talking about the same company that enabled the thunderbolt in your beloved mac in first place. Third, every single Apple adaptor i own is a) big b) bulky. Snap out of the RDF.

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Apple would probably sue them if they did something similar.


Certainly. Im sure Apple can think of a way to patent "one cable splitting into two".
Rating: 12 Positives
31 months ago
Big bulky cables like that are not the way to go. Apple proved that with the Thunderbolt connector on today's Macs. Having two cables there is not smart, why they did not consolidate into one cable makes no sense.
Rating: 12 Positives
31 months ago

It looks like Sony implementation of Thunderbolt connector


Yes it does. It appears quite similar.

Apple has ignored building a good docking station for their MBP's and I miss it.

The ThinkPad docking stations are very handy. In a matter of seconds it snaps in place & immediately your monitor, printer, scanner, trackball or mouse & keyboard are all connected. It saves wear & tear, as well as time.

It's a lot cleaner since you can permanently route the cables nicely with tie wraps which give it a very nice look. If you buy the expansion dock it accommodates extra expansion like another SSD or Hard Drive, as well as other accessories.

I know that Apple is opposed to businesses, but to cheat the consumer out of such a valuable accessory is something that seems a bit absurd.
Rating: 11 Positives
31 months ago

I never said Apple invented Thunderbolt. I said everything in the PC world is done half@ssed. I still feel that way. I think Apple's single cable into a monitor which hosts all the ports you would want, like Ethernet, FireWire, USB, and display is much more elegant than any solution on the PC. Dock stations are a bulky disaster. You act like I've never owned a PC. I have several PCs and I hate docking stations with a passion. I happen to like Apple's solution much more. Just a single cable line, with a power and data connect. It's easy and clean.


Bulky, where?


Big, bulky, complicated? Where?

Second, with thunderbolt being pushed to market, you will certainly see others doing the same thing pop up here and there (just like you today see monitors with audio and usb-outputs for example). Problem is, once they do, you'll quit bitching about how sucky they are, and switch over to the "they just copy" routine.

You see, that is how the average Apple troll operates. Damned if they do, damned if they don't. That is the melody.
Rating: 10 Positives
31 months ago
Apple would probably sue them if they did something similar.
Rating: 9 Positives

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