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31 January 2011.
At the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas this month, Intel confirmed that Light Peak will reach the market in 2011 but that, despite the name, the first implementation of the new interconnect technology will use copper cabling rather than fibre-optics.
Light Peak was envisioned as a single, super-high-speed replacement for the myriad of cables connecting computers with peripheral devices such as printers and disk drives.  Apple and Sony are two of the big name electronics firms that are said to be pushing hard for the development of the new technology.
Intel says connection speeds will not be affected by the decision; 10 Gbps is possible using copper over distances of a few metres, which are typical in office computing environments, although it won’t stretch to the longer distances used in a home wiring solution.   Using copper will allow Light Peak technology to enter the market at a lower price point, Intel says.
by Pauline Rigby.