FireWire catching up to USB with 3.2 GB/s spec

The IEEE has approved a new standard for IEEE 1394, introducing support for faster data transfers, marking a significant improvement for the serial bus interface.

The new IEEE 1394-2008 specification will introduce support for S1600 (1.6 GB/s) and S3200 (3.2 GB/s). It will be fully backward compatible with previous ports, S400 and S800.

Many older FireWire and i.Link devices are still running on the old specification, which tops out at 400 Mb/s, due to a connector design change when the 800 Mb/s spec was introduced.

With the new faster speeds, available starting in October, IEEE 1394 will remain competitive with the upcoming USB 3.0, which will upgrade to 4.8 GB/s.