USB Type-C is all set to become the factotum of all connectors.
The Video Electronics Standards Association (VESA) has launched a new standard DisplayPort Alt Model 2.0 that can transmit USB data while also giving USB 4 all the characteristics of the DisplayPort 2.0 standard. In other words, it enables support for 8K displays at 60Hz with HDR, 4K displays at 144Hz with HDR and 16K displays at 60 Hz with compression.
AnandTech reports that this new standard will remap USB-C’s high-speed data pins. This is instrumental in unlocking more bandwidth for video.
Currently, the USB 4 spec can already transmit DisplayPort data. It’s also bidirectional and lets it carry up to 40Gbps of data in either direction. In the case of video however, you only need the data to pass from one medium to another.
As such, the alt mode means that all the bandwidth can be used for the video to give a maximum raw bandwidth of up to 80Gbps. Also, it does away with the need of having a USB 4 controller at either end of the system – just the DisplayPort hardware at each end is required.
DisplayPort Alt Mode, the very first USB-C alt mode, was launched back in 2014. It made using the USB-C port as a DisplayPort video output possible by remapping the USB-C high-speed data pins from USB data to DisplayPort data. After this, the whopping number of desired devices with video output became the go-to source for driving video outputs when a dedicated HDMI port was missing from laptops.
Packed with the plus points of DisplayPort 2.0 specs and DisplayPort video with USB 4 data, DisplayPort Alt Mode 2.0 is sure to leave a mark. It’s trying to create an alternative to drive video out smoothly while eliminating the need of having a dedicated port.
The first DisplayPort Alt Mode 2.0 devices are expected to hit the markets in 2021, according to VESA.