MacBooks | MacGizmoGuy Blog

The New USB 3.0 MacBook Lineup

SuperSpeed USB 3.0 ports on the new MacBook Pro, Air and Retina Display models might be a bigger deal than you think. Although Apple only seemed to mention its inclusion in passing, the future numbers of USB 3.0 devices by the end of the decade is going to be staggering. The performance leap (and other technical benefits) over USB 2.0 will make you realize just how slow and outdated the USB 2.0 standard had become. But that all changes with the inclusion of USB 3.0 ports on the new MacBook lineup.

USB 3.0 MacBook Air

$999 11.6" Display

USB 3.0 MacBook Pro 13"

Dual USB3-USB2 Ports

USB 3.0 Retina Display MacBook

New Ultra-Thin NoteBook

Currently, the dominant USB 3.0 peripherals for Mac (besides cards and cables) are USB 3.0 backup drives. Most are spinning platter external drives. Some SSD solid-state flash memory and USB3 keychain drives and card-readers are available as well. There's also a fair number of shipping USB 3.0 hubs - but until other kinds of Mac accessories become USB 3.0 enabled, there isn't much need for multi-port device sharing - yet.

When the iPad, iPhone and iPod starts to take advantage of the benefits of USB 3.0 remains to be seen. (But it'll be soon I bet to capture the Holiday shopping season…)

Other Mac accessories - be it Printers and All-In-Ones, HD TV tuners, Scanners, Video Capture and other bandwidth hungry gadgets get full device and USB 3.0 driver support for OSX Lion and Leopard might take awhile. But as new models of all sorts of computer peripherals are introduced, using a back-ward compatible USB 3.0 chipset is going to be a no brainer. The cost differential of USB2 vs USB3 chips in a product are mere pennies. And there's not much point in computer device manufacturers to cripple their products with Last Decade's connectivity standard.