eSATA Faces a Serious Threat from USB 3.0 as High-Speed Interface
External SATA (eSATA), a dedicated storage interface found in PCs, external hard disk drives and set-top boxes, faces strong competitive alternatives, reports In-Stat (http://www.in-stat.com). The current eSATA standard offers data rates of 3Gbps, while the next version, which will be available in the second half of 2010, will offer 6Gbps. The doubling of throughput will not insulate the technology safe from competition, however.
USB 3.0 poses a serious threat to eSATA. eSATA lacks the versatility of USB and 1394/FireWire, which are found in a much wider range of devices.
Recent research by In-Stat found the following:
- eSATA has a small cost advantage over its competition because
it is commonly integrated into the PC southbridge chip
- eSATA faces better sustainability in set top box markets than in the PC or external hard drive markets.
This Market Alert is drawn from the In-Stat research, eSATA: A Niche Interface Comes Under Pressure from USB 3.0  (#IN0904454MI), which covers the worldwide market for eSATA. It includes:
- Analysis of the market for eSATA in PCs, external storage, and set-top boxes.
- Worldwide annual forecasts for both 3Gbps and 6Gbps eSATA through 2013 in the following markets: desktop PCs, mobile PCs, external hard drives, cable, satellite, and total set-top boxes.
To purchase it online, please visit: http://www.instat.com/catalog/mmcatalogue.asp?id=161 
The price is $1,495 (US).
This research is part of In-Stat's Multimedia Interfaces service, which identifies and forecasts the markets for key interface technologies and tracks penetration of these technologies into PCs, PC peripherals, consumer electronics, communications, automotive and industrial applications. It also examines competitors, industry agendas, technology platforms, semiconductor technology and shipments. Supply and demand-side insights are combined to examine these dynamic, evolving technologies.
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