Light Peak is essentially a connector to transfer data between technologies, in a similar sense to USB, but at a high speed. Intel has long been accused of missing the boat on USB 3.0, but Light Peak seeks to compete, with a multi-protocal wire that can run between Ethernet, USB, HDMI and others, at a high speed.
It’s expected that Intel will host a briefing in San Francisco today. The WSJ’s sources say Light Peak is the focus, and there will shortly be an announcement between Apple and Intel where Light Peak will be used on new Mac laptops. The paper mentions the cultish Mac websites who have posted photos which talk up a piece of Intel tech called Thunderbolt, allegedly a new connector.
USB 3.0 has generally had a positive reception but only if you can get your hands on it. Intel has been accused of slowing innovation and dragging its heels on chipset releases, while NEC sat proud at the top of the market for some time. Via and others were also slow to capitalise.
TechEye has heard from a trusted source that Intel may also be announcing a new chip aimed at the data centre processing market, and may be offering an alternative to Xeon. This mysterious new chip, if it exists, will launch in April or so we’ve heard.
*Update Yes, Intel confirmed the announcement is about Light Peak. Apple will be the first customer. The technical bits and bobs can all be found here.