Jobs’ Mob has been given a patent for a new hybrid connector that combines several high-speed data technologies onto a single 30-pin connector.
Thunderboth was designed by Jobs’ Mob and Intel and is seen as a competing standard to USB 3.0. It seems that Apple thinks it is better to hedge its bets this time and develop a connector that could support both.
The patent images show the connector as part of an iOS device and it would allow better syncing between the toys that Apple sells these days. At the moment, it takes a while for iOS devices to sync properly thanks to the limits of USB 2.0.
The patent documents say that this would be an option on “future Mac hardware” so it would appear that Apple was very serious about getting it going.
Certainly keeping the connectors as “open” as possible would prevent a repeat of the Firewire fiasco. Accessory makers ignored it because Apple charged too much for Firewire and it was relegated to use in Apple machines and the dustbin of history.
This way whatever wins the standard war can be used.