To USB or Not to USB


CES 2008 – Connected Home

Dean Takehashi points out that CES 2008 is about connecting to the home network.  The keynotes by Bill Gates and Paul Otellini point to more wireless/portable devices on the way, both in concept and reality.

It seems to me that USB, specifically Hi-Speed USB or USB 2.0 will dominate the way we share and move content around the home.  It’s a one-plug fits all.  My DVD player has a USB host port so I can stick in thumb drive or a USB digital camera, and view the photos on my 46″ Sharp TV instead of my camera’s 2.5″ TV.  It’s point-to-point.  No additional software. No additional setup.  No network to setup.

In Silicon Valley, WiFi continues to migrate into more devices, but Certified Wireless USB over takes WiFi by 2010/2011 in consumer devices as the power savings and data rate are just plain better than WiFi.   The ease of use of CWUSB will also help speed adoption.

Outside Silicon Valley, we will see the average consumer using USB 2.0 more.  My feeling is, talking to my friends in Minnesota and Illinois, a WiFi network is more common now, but file sharing and moving media around the home is not so common.  So I think, we will see even more wired USB on more home products at the same time that WiFi and Wireless USB enter more products.  A new product I’ve seen called TakeTV basically lets you dump Video onto a little flash drive on your PC, then you walk over to a dongle plugged into your TV set, and you can watch the video on your TV.  It’s not on-demand, but requires a low-level of technical expertise.  No Firewalls, IP Addresses, or Encryption to deal with.

As USB 3.0 enters the market in the next few years, we will see an even faster transition for devices with HD content that has “huge” file sizes (hard drives, set top boxes, media players).

See Dean Takehashi’s Blog for insights on CES.

Hi-Speed USB USB 3.0 USB 2.0 CES 2008 Wireless USB

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