Report: Ontario laptops might get native USB 3.0

Yesterday, we wrote about some rumors surrounding AMD's upcoming Ontario accelerated processing unit. Today, DigiTimes reports the chip's matching Hudson D1 chipset may have an interesting new feature: native USB 3.0 connectivity.

Considering AMD aims Ontario at ultra-thin notebooks and netbooks, adding native USB 3.0 to the accompanying south bridge would be a bold move. After all, the rumor mill hints that Intel might not add USB 3.0 to its own chipsets—even high-end ones—until 2012. If AMD decides to go ahead, Ontario systems might therefore find themselves up against a host of Intel ultraportables without next-gen I/O connectivity (and perhaps a few with third-party controller chips) later this year.

This wouldn't be the first time AMD has beaten Intel to the punch on the I/O front. AMD's 800-series chipsets offer six native 6Gbps Serial ATA ports, while Intel is still stuck with the previous SATA generation. USB 3.0 seems like an even better selling point, mainly because USB 2.0 can be a considerable bottleneck for external hard drives and the like. 3Gbps SATA is, thankfully, still quick enough even for the latest solid-state drives.

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