How Fast is USB 3.0

How Fast is USB 3.0?

Universal Serial Bus or USB for short has been a mainstream interface for a computer device, including smartphone and tablet. Since its debut in 1996, USB has many improvements such as additional smaller port and speed performance. In terms of speed transfer, USB 3.0 is the fastest protocol now. But, how fast is USB 3.0 comparing to its predecessor?

We have a USB 1.0, USB 2.0, and USB 3.0. However, the USB 3.0 recently got new iteration, namely USB 3.1 and USB 3.2. Although it still the third generation, the speed performance is twice from their brother.

So, let’s break down those USB variants speed respectively.

How Fast is USB 3.0?

I have harvested some information about the USB family, from 1.0 to newest 3.0 along with supported connector.

USB VariantMaximum SpeedSupported Connectors
USB 1.01,5 MB/sType-A, Type B, Mini-A, Mini-B, Micro-A, Micro-B
USB 2.060 MB/sType-A, Type B, Mini-A, Mini-B, Micro-A, Micro-B
USB 3.0625 MB/sType-A, Type B, Mini-B, Micro-B
USB 3.11250 MB/sType-A, Type C
USB 3.22500 MB/sType-C

Gathered from Wikipedia

Average movie in size is about 800 MB, if you using USB 3.2 with a Type-C connector, you can copy up to three movies from laptop to USB flash drive with a second. But, it not always the case.

The speed transfer is depending on processor capability and storage performance. If your processor is overload with a bunch of tasks, the speed would be decreased during the transfer.

In addition, currently, no single USB flash drive or SD card has a similar speed with USB 3.0. This means the speed will follow the maximum state of the storage system. Except you copying to external SSD device, the speed would significantly affect.

Do I need a USB 3.0?

The vast majority of computer maker offers a USB 3.0 on their product. It allows the user to use USB 3.0 cable to forward data quickly to another device with a blink of an eye. If you regularly transfer big files through USB, this speed protocol would really help.

But if you only use a USB port as the way to connect keyboard, mouse, or router, the speed isn’t necessary. After all, USB 3.0 is a little bit more expensive than popular 2.0 version. No matter how fast is USB 2.0, if you rarely transfer files, it wasn’t mandatory setup.

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