Chip manufacturer Intel will show the next generation of Thunderbolt at next month's Computex in Taiwan. Alongside the reveal of Thunderbolt 3, Intel is also showing USB Type C 3.1, the next iteration of the new connectivity standard that debuted on Apple's MacBook rebirth.
The current generation of Thunderbolt (Thunderbolt 2) reaches 20Gb/s. Apple's implementation of USB-C on the MacBook is based on the USB 3.0 protocol, which runs at 5Gb/s. USB Type-C 3.1 is a 10Gb/s protocol, still just half the speed than Thunderbolt 2. Thunderbolt 3 is said to be up to 40Gb/s, with some reports claiming even faster speeds, making it suitable for 8K video workflows. The USB 3.1 spec is final, and Intel's discussion about it is suspected to be limited to hubs and ancillary equipment associated with the new connector.
No firm data about what Intel is showing has been made public. Despite USB's ubiquity and rumors circulating that Apple is going to phase it out in favor of USB-C, Intel claims that the pair of technologies which it helped spearhead are complementary, and can co-exist. It is likely that Thunderbolt will continue to be regarded as a "pro-level" technology, with USB-C taking the "consumer" market.
MacNN is in the process of evaluating the practicality and implications of shared bandwidth of Apple's USB-C implementation with docking stations, versus Thunderbolt.