The IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers) has approved the FireWire 1600 and 3200 specs. The new standards are based on the already established FireWire system, and they will be fully backwards compatible. They will offer speeds of 1.6Gbps and 3.2Gbps, you know...lots more than the previous 400 and 800 standards. Makes sense, time goes on and things get better.

The IEEE also doesn’t want you to think they’re going to sit idly by as USB 3.0 hits in 2010. They already have plans for the far future getting a standard running at speeds of 6.4Gbps. Except for a brief time when iPods were first rolling out for PC and you heard that FireWire was a “must have” I’ve never had a use. The USB standard is more prevalent and works great. Current PCs, such as the one I’m sitting at now, typically only have 1 FireWire port. And that’s more likely to be the 400. Mac owners will balk at that and say they have the 800 standard…but they also have a Mac.

The USB 3.0 standards are set to be published by the end of this year. We’ll see if the few month head start is enough to keep FireWire in our computers. I have a feeling you’ll see nothing change when looking for a port to plug your devices in.

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