I had only read the title of this article macOS Sierra Code Confirms Thunderbolt 3 and 10Gb/s USB 3.1 Transfer Speeds in Future Macs) from macrumors.com (brought to you by 9to5mac.com) and boy was I surprised. I thought that I had missed something. Then I fired up my data scraper and… found nothing!
Ehm. Guys. Where is this mysterious “Thunderbolt 3” string?
Fact checkers can verify this themselves by following this simple procedure:
1.) cd /S*/L*/SystemProfiler/SPThunderboltReporter.spreporter/C*/R*/English.lproj
2.) sudo plutil -convert xml1 Localizable.strings
3.) open Localizable.strings
Lo and behold:
<key>Up to 10 Gb/s x1</key> <string>Up to 10 Gb/s x1</string> <key>Up to 10 Gb/s x2</key> <string>Up to 10 Gb/s x2</string> <key>Up to 20 Gb/s x1</key> <string>Up to 20 Gb/s x1</string> <key>Up to 20 Gb/s x2</key> <string>Up to 20 Gb/s x2</string>
That is what I found there. There is no 40 Gb/s x4 or anything.
So let’s check out what Jeff Benjamin actually wrote:
“For example, it’s possible that we could see support for Thunderbolt 3 in the highly anticipated MacBook Pro refresh. It’s worth noting that 10 Gbps USB 3.1 Gen 2 is built in to Thunderbolt 3.”
I agree. That is very well possible. Perhaps even likely since Thunderbolt is a highly anticipated feature, but what macrumors.com concluded is not correct. You cannot conclude that from that data. To me it’s more like this; The minute we find references of Kaby Lake… then Thunderbolt 3 is confirmed, but for now… everything is still speculation.
Note: The “Up to 10 Gb/sec” string can be found in:
Update: Take a look at the next picture. Taken from an Intel slide:
You could say that this confirms that the next MacBook (Pro) will come with Thunderbolt 3 support, and it is very likely, but we don’t know for what model(s) and what processor it will use. Only Apple knows…
Edit: Previously we could only guess, but the launch of the new Late 2016 MacBook Pro changed all that. They do come with Thunderbolt 3 and thus now we can say that it is confirmed.