Whether you are a PC or Mac user, you have inevitably seen new connectors flourish on laptops in recent years. USB-C and Thunderbolt have almost completely replaced other ports for charging and data transfer. But what really differentiates them from each other?
Despite their almost identical shape at first glance, theand the 3 have several differences. To put it simply, the Thunderbolt 3 is a connector that uses and adds several improvements to it like better charging and data transfer. This means that all Thunderbolt ports are compatible with . But then why not prefer Thunderbolt to USB-C on all our laptops?
Unlike USB-C, which is the work of a consortium of companies and can be integrated into any device without paying a fee, Thunderbolt is a technology exclusive tothe first versions of which used MDP (Mini DisplayPort) connectors. It is therefore impossible to find a computer equipped with a compatible with this standard. However, Apple has shown with its Apple Silicon Macs that Thunderbolt does not necessarily require a processor to work.
In its early days, the Thunderbolt was to be used exclusively forand high display but got beefed up with remarkable charging capabilities in its third iteration, allowing it to charge a device to 100 in some cases. It is also this iteration that will begin to use USB-C as a connector instead of the Mini DisplayPort.
How to tell USB-C from Thunderbolt 3 at a glance?
To find out quickly if theof a computer are Thunderbolt compatible, just check for the presence of a small arrow in the shape of a above or next to the port. On Macbooks released since late 2016, these arrows cannot be found because all USB-C ports on these devices are equipped with the technology. If in doubt, just check the technical data sheet of your computer on the manufacturer’s website. Also worth noting is the need to use a Thunderbolt 3 compatible cable to take advantage of the standard.
What devices take advantage of Thunderbolt 3?
More and more peripherals are starting to integrate a Thunderbolt port as a replacement or alternative to other. Displays like Apple’s Pro Display XDR are good examples since Thunderbolt allows a Macbook Pro to display 6K resolution video output while charging. The fast data transfer also allows the use of external graphics cards (eGPU). We also mention the that allow high-speed copying of large files to and from the computer.