The USB 3.0 Promoter group has finalized the specifications of USB 3.1 with theoretical transfer speeds of 10Gbps – double the transfer speeds its predecessor was capable of providing.

The group has said that the new SuperSpeed USB is more efficient when it comes to data encoding and will be backwards compatible with the existing USB 3.0 software stack, devices that use the interface and USB 2.0 capable devices.

“SuperSpeed USB 10 Gbps uses a more efficient data encoding and will deliver more than twice the effective data through-put performance of existing SuperSpeed USB over enhanced, fully backward compatible USB connectors and cables”, reads the press release.

USB 3.0 was known as SuperSpeed and the new 3.1 would be known as SuperSpeed+ (as is evident from the logo on the press release). The group has revealed that developer conferences will be held in August, October and December which will concentrate on imparting technical details about the specification.

Intel’s Thunderbolt already provides interface speeds of up to 10Gbps and a faster 20Gbps spec is already on the way but, with USB 3.1 the weak (in terms of adoption) Thunderbolt is in for a stiff competition.