Things are different on Planet Intel. Over there, Thunderbolt drives and peripherals are as cheap and abundant as artificial intelligences in a Culture novel, so the population’s attention has already turned to what comes next. Some are prepared to wait for a promised 50Gbps optical interconnect by 2015, but an impatient few are trying to make Thunderbolt exploit the new PCI-Express 3.0 standard for more immediate thrills. PCWorld claims the latest form of PCI-Express found in Sandy Bridge E, Ivy Bridge and Xeon E5 chipsets could make 10Gbps Thunderbolt run “significantly faster”, thanks to a 60 percent speed boost over PCIe 2.0. Maybe they’re right, but back on this planet we’re still 33 percent of the way through transferring The Best of Leo Sayer to our USB 2.0-equipped Xperia S.
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