Since the introduction of the Thunderbolt IO interface by Intel and Apple in February 2011, Apple haven’t been slow implementing the new technology into many of its product line.
Thunderbolt ports have been added to the new MacBook Pro, iMacs, MacBook Air laptops, Mac Minis and Apple Thunderbolt Display.
The fact that the Thunderbolt I/O is twice as fast as USB 3.0 (and this is before it has moved to a fibre optic cable), has not been missed by Apple. In addition it can be daisy chained, so up to six devices can be connected to a Mac when using only one Thunderbolt port.
Development of Thunderbolt enabled peripherals has been slow but this is normal with any new technology. More products are becoming available now and this will only increase as the Thunderbolt I/O is introduced by more PC vendors. Acer, Asus and Gigabyte are planning to release products with Thunderbolt ports in 2012.
Not surprising then that Apple may be looking to implement a Thunderbolt interface solution for its range of iOS devices.
The US Patent Office has received three new filings that backup the suggestion that this could be a possibility. Apple will probably have to redesign the connector so it is flat enough to fit an iOS device.
But with the benefits the Thunderbolt interface brings it would be worth as it will dramatically improve data transfer and charging times.
There is more information regarding the new patents via the link below: