Universal Serial Bus (USB)

USB is a means of allowing peripherals to be connected to a computer, such as a mouse or keyboard.

The first revision of the USB (1996) standard allowed for data transfer rates of up to 12Mbps and with as many as 127 devices connected to the bus. USB 2.0 (2000) significantly improved the performance by increasing the possible data transfer rate to 480Mbps.

Virtually every new computer on the market sports one or more USB connectors. As such, most new device manufacturers today utilize USB— especially when the transfer rates are not significant. Devices such as video cameras, which need to transfer a significant amount of data, often support FireWire only or in addition to the slower USB.

Resources: USB Implementers Forum, USB Central

See Also: FireWire (IEEE 1394)