Following word that Apple applied for a trademark on the Thunderbolt name, Intel has offered a little clarification since it was already credited with developing the high-speed data transfer technology. According to Intel’s senior communications manager, Dave Salvator, Apple filed for the Thunderbolt trademark, but is transferring it to Intel.
Apple will continue using Thunderbolt technology without any restrictions after the trademark transfer is complete, according to Bright Side of News.
“As part of our collaboration with Apple, they did some of the initial trademark filings,” Mr. Salvator said. “Intel has full rights to the Thunderbolt trademark now and into the future. The Thunderbolt name will be used going forward on all platforms, irrespective of operating system.”
Thunderbolt is a new expansion port developed by Intel that offers 10Gbp/s bi-directional data transfer speeds. In Apple’s implementation, it uses the same Mini DisplayPort connector that Apple relies on for external displays, but also supports hard drives and other peripherals.
Intel’s confirmation that it will hold the Thunderbolt trademark makes it look like consumers won’t have to deal with the same confusion they experienced with the various names associated with the IEEE 1394 standard. While Apple used the name “FireWire,” Sony went with “iLink,” and other companies stuck with the 1394 moniker.
Intel hasn’t, however, sorted out Apple’s decision to use a Mini DisplayPort connector with Thunderbolt, and Sony’s desire to go with a USB-style connector.