Lacie driveSource: LaCie

What you need to know

  • Intel confirmed Thunderbolt 4 is on its way.
  • It was mentioned during a CES press conference.
  • It's going to be faaaaast.

[Update] Sometimes things get a little mixed up during trade shows, and it seems to have happened here, too. As Tom's Hardware notes – after seeking multiple clarifications from Intel – Thunderbolt 4 isn't actually going to be any faster than Thunderbolt 3. So it's basically a re-branding. Which is just wonderful. Original article follows:

Intel has been speaking about its upcoming Tiger Lake processors at CES 2020, and as part of that we've heard good news about Thunderbolt 4. In short, it's coming.

We always expected Thunderbolt 4 would arrive eventually, but now we know that the upcoming Tiger Lake mobile processors will support it. And according to Intel, we can expect throughout to be "four times as high as USB 3."

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I presume that's the most recent, super-duper, fasty-fast version of USB 3 which is the snappily-named USB 3.2 Gen 2x2. That spec boasts speeds of around 20Mbps, making Thunderbolt 4 considerably faster than the 40Gbps of its predecessor.

We don't know when Thunderbolt 4 will arrive, or when Apple will start to implement it. That all depends on which Intel chips support it, and while we're told Tiger Lake will be around later this year, that's as much as we know for now.