A tweet from an Intel executive that has since been deleted contained an image that revealed some details about the in-development Thunderbolt 5, including that Intel is aiming to double the existing Thunderbolt bandwidth limits to 80Gbps.
Thunderbolt 4 was announced at CES 2020 and the final specification was released in July 2020. The key differences between Thunderbolt 4 and Thunderbolt 3 are support for USB4 protocol and data rates, a minimum bandwidth requirement of 32 Gbit/s for PCIe link, support for dual 4K displays (DisplayPort 1.4), and Intel VT-d-based direct memory access protection to prevent physical DMA attacks.
Seen by Anandtech, the image was wiped from Twitter as it includes a poster in the background that details what is believed to be Thunderbolt 5. The poster imparts a few key pieces of information about the connection’s operation, including that it is tentatively called “USB 80G.”
Despite not stating Thuderbolt at all on the poster, Bryan’s tweet mentions it was a Thunderbolt-related lab tour. Also, given the closeness of Thunderbolt and USB by Intel allowing the Thunderbolt 3 specification to be part of the USB 4 standard, it seems highly plausible the poster is about Thunderbolt 5.
According to the poster in the image, the connection is “targeted to support the existing USB-C ecosystem,” which means Intel plans to continue using the USB Type-C connection.
MacDailyNews Take: Bring on Thunderbolt 5!