Thunderbolt-equipped ultrabooks reportedly on the way

Soon, Apple's grasp on Thunderbolt will loosen—next quarter, specifically. That's when DigiTimes says we can expect the interface to feature in ultrabooks from Acer, Asus, and Lenovo.

Those Thunderbolt-toting machines will be powered by Ivy Bridge processors, and they may well carry a price premium attached to their next-generation I/O. DigiTimes adds that, according to its sources, Thunderbolt "is only expected to be adopted among high-end notebooks or desktops in 2012." (The interface will reportedly go on to be "fully standardized by 2013.")

That's all the news the site has to share. We did hear at CES last week that Ivy Bridge will bring Thunderbolt into the mainstream, and absent an official announcement from Intel or its partners, this sounds like confirmation.

One thing's for sure: this is shaping up to be a momentous year for next-gen connectivity. AMD's Lightning Bolt is expected to surface in the market as early as the second half of the year, and it will no doubt complement those Trinity-powered ultrathins we've been hearing about. May the best interface win.

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