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.

tb dock 1
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.

dock

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

adcx64 Avatar
162 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.

----------

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. :)
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)
divinox Avatar
162 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.

----------

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.
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
adcx64 Avatar
162 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.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
thekev Avatar
162 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.

Thunderbolt is currently limited to 20W in its current implementation. This could simply be an issue of delivering more power. You won't be daisy chaining 7 devices or whatever it was off 20W. Also plenty of Apple cables are bulky and have plenty of limitations.

Apple would probably sue them if they did something similar.

You know that Intel owns it right? Are they going to sue Intel too? Intel did the primary development going back several years. Apple just got to implement it first.

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.

Apple didn't invent thunderbolt. Say that to yourself 10 times in the mirror so that the denial can go away. Intel designed it for computers that run off Intel chipsets. They debuted/beta tested on Macs. Thunderbolt was destined for Windows PCs before Apple even had it. Recall the name lightpeak? It's the same thing. It was simply rebranded as thunderbolt. There's an incredibly uneducated biased view that Apple is the only company that knows how to do anything right. I use Macs too. I've worked on Windows computers as well, and late XP to Vista was the time they really sucked. Today they're just as good.
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
OrangeSVTguy Avatar
162 months ago
Why are we still using cables? Why not try to come up with some super-high-speed close range wireless connector?
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Cicatrix Avatar
162 months ago
It will be nice to finally have a docking station for all peripherals through t-bolt. I wish it would include sata, and usb3 though. Also, that Belkin Express Dock design looks like complete junk.
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

iPhone 16 Camera Lozenge 2 Colors

iPhone 16 Plus Rumored to Come in These 7 Colors

Wednesday April 10, 2024 3:52 am PDT by
Apple's iPhone 16 Plus may come in seven colors that either build upon the existing five colors in the standard iPhone 15 lineup or recast them in a new finish, based on a new rumor out of China. According to the Weibo-based leaker Fixed focus digital, Apple's upcoming larger 6.7-inch iPhone 16 Plus model will come in the following colors, compared to the colors currently available for the...
apple tv 4k yellow bg feature

When to Expect a New Apple TV to Launch

Tuesday April 9, 2024 8:30 am PDT by
It has been nearly a year and a half since the current Apple TV was released, so the device is becoming due for a hardware upgrade. Below, we recap rumors about the next Apple TV, including potential features and launch timing. The current model is the third-generation Apple TV 4K, announced in October 2022. Key new features compared to the previous model from 2021 include a faster A15...
apple silicon feature joeblue

Macs to Get AI-Focused M4 Chips Starting in Late 2024

Thursday April 11, 2024 10:10 am PDT by
Apple will begin updating its Mac lineup with M4 chips in late 2024, according to Bloomberg's Mark Gurman. The M4 chip will be focused on improving performance for artificial intelligence capabilities. Last year, Apple introduced the M3, M3 Pro, and M3 Max chips all at once in October, so it's possible we could see the M4 lineup come during the same time frame. Gurman says that the entire...
iOS 18 Siri Integrated Feature

iOS 18 Will Add These New Features to Your iPhone

Friday April 12, 2024 11:11 am PDT by
iOS 18 is expected to be the "biggest" update in the iPhone's history. Below, we recap rumored features and changes for the iPhone. iOS 18 is rumored to include new generative AI features for Siri and many apps, and Apple plans to add RCS support to the Messages app for an improved texting experience between iPhones and Android devices. The update is also expected to introduce a more...
maxresdefault

Review: Six Months With the iPhone 15 Pro

Wednesday April 10, 2024 10:53 am PDT by
It's been a bit over six months since the iPhone 15 lineup came out in September, and MacRumors videographer Dan Barbera has been using an iPhone 15 Pro Max sans case since launch. Over on our YouTube channel, Dan did a long term review to demo how his phone has held up and his thoughts on the Action button, battery life, and camera features. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more ...