Despite being rolled out in late 2008, Apple has yet to adopt the USB 3.0 standard for connectivity on their Macs. At last, however, it seems that Apple is exploring the use of this newer standard to replace the aging USB 2.0 ports that are found on all current generation Macs. USB 3.0 boasts speeds up to ten times faster than its predecessor, which reduces both the time and power consumption that are associated with data transmission.
Intel’s lack of support for USB 3.0 in their motherboards could be the probable reason for Apple choosing to hold back on adopting the latest standards, but now it seems that the Cupertino-based company is ready to implement such technology despite the delays from the chip maker. The third iteration of USB technology would be significantly cheaper to implement into Macs than Apple’s new high speed Thunderbolt ports. Intel will support both USB 3.0 and Thunderbolt in their 2012 “Ivy Bridge” processors.
The Mac Pro could be the first computer to receive USB 3.0 support, as it would appear to be the next Mac to be poised for an upgrade. It is unknown when other Mac models could receive this implementation, as the MacBook Air, iMac, and Mac Mini have all been upgraded recently.