The surprise announcement of USB 4.0 might mean that it is already a threat to Thunderbolt 3 Speeds. This is particularly shocking because USB 3.2 is not even out yet.
Back in July 2017, the USB 3.2 was announced with its support of the multi-lane operation. It was meant to sort out some of the issues with the previously available cables. That industry first gave us the USB 3.2 Generation 1, with data transfer speeds of 5Gbps which was originally USB 3.0.
Then the USB 3.2 Generation 2, which ramped up data transfer speeds to 10Gbps. This was known as USB 3.1. Also, the USB 3.2 Gen 2×2, which would use two lanes of 10Gbps to reach speeds of up to 20 Gbps.
The USB Implementers Forum also produced a list of recommended marketing nicknames for the cables. They were the SuperSpeed USB, SuperSpeed USB 10Gbps, and SuperSpeed USB 20Gbps.
Now, the new USB 4.0 will have a two-lane operation using existing USB Type-C cables and up to 40Gbps operation over 40 Gbps-certified cables. It will also have Multiple data and display protocols to efficiently share the total available bandwidth over the bus, and backward compatibility with USB 3.2, USB 2.0 and Thunderbolt 3.
According to reports, the connector might stay the same, but the data you can get through the cable will be very different.
The USB 4.0 is expected out in the market in 2020, however, there might be a delay based on it being built on Thunderbolt 3.
More details about it will be unveiled soon.