Letters from Steve: No Mac USB 3 For Now

| News

An e-mail allegedly from Apple CEO Steve Jobs said that Apple doesn’t have any plans for now to support USB 3, a much faster version of USB that is beginning to show up on PCs.

9to5Mac published an e-mail from a reader who said he asked Mr. Jobs why he couldn’t order a Mac with the new technology. He told the site that Mr. Jobs replied, “We don’t see USB 3 taking off at this time. No support from Intel, for example.”

Steve Jobs has often been known to respond to Apple customers who e-mail him, and his responses have typically been short and to the point like the quote above.

USB 3 is as much as ten times faster than USB 2, offering up to 5Gb of data per second. Real world tests on the PC side have so far not even set sites on that theoretical maximum, but there is little doubt that USB 3 will be faster than USB 2.

Intel is supposed to come out with its own USB 3 chipset in 2011, which could be the support Apple is looking for to consider the technology.


USB 3.0



This is good news. I’ve noticed it’s pretty common that 1, sometimes 2 revisions after Steve says “we’re not doing it” that technology is announced to be included the next time Steve is on stage.


Jobs will probably veto USB 3 simply because of that horrid logo. Is that official?

Ross Edwards

It’s just like DVD burning and everything before it… Apple is waiting until the implementation is essentially perfect, and then it will be trivial to include.


that horrid logo

Seriously. It was bad enough before they added the 3.0.
A simple “3” inside the far left circle would do it.


Apple is waiting until the implementation is essentially perfect, and then it will be trivial to include.

Hmm… Just like it’s happened with wifi n, uh?


It looks like the devil’s pitchfork with a ‘shocker’ attached.


Lee Dronick

It looks like the devil?s pitchfork with a ?shocker? attached.

I was thinking that it looks like the glyph used by the artist formerly known as The Prince of Darkness.


It may be that Apple plans to skip USB 3.0 altogether and og straight to Light Peak, which is an optical cable interface with 10/Gbit/s. bandwidth.  Light Peak is Apple’s technology, which it took to Intel for Apple and Intel to co-develop as an industry standard.  Light Peak can replace all existing bus interfaces (SCSI, SATA, USB, FireWire, PCI Express, and HDMI) with much greater speed, longer distance cabling, is cheaper to implement in silicon, and can do everything that existing buses do but only better.  The trick is, of course, the classic one of getting everyone on board, particularly device OEMs, which have to make the device and the drivers.  That includes everyone from TV makers replacing HDMI with Light Peak to makers of printers and peripherals. 

Light Peak blows everything else away, but you have make sure that there are devices for it before you put it on a Mac, Apple TV, etc.


I’d like to see a combination of HDMI and LightPeak. I don’t see a reason to use an optical interface for a mouse and keyboard, even HDMI is way too fast, but standardize on TWO ports, get rid of the rest and put a bunch on a machine.

I’m so sick of the power fluctuation problems with USB 1 and 2. UGH!

Log in to comment (TMO, Twitter or Facebook) or Register for a TMO account