FireWire Reaches 2 Billion Ports Worldwide, Looks To Grow In 2011

When it comes to major connectors, FireWire is pretty high up there on the list. It's obviously not nearly as universal as the Universal Serial Bus (USB), but it's still a well-know, oft utilized port for A/V professionals. FireWire always had a larger grip on the Mac market than the PC market, but even with eSATA and USB 3.0 making it out to market in the past couple of years, FireWire has continued to hang in there. It's declining, for sure, but FireWire 800 has shown to be a fast competitor in a lot of ways, and for creative pros who have already invested in lots of FireWire gear, they aren't about to jump ship.

According to a news release out this week from the 1394 Trade Association, FireWire has just reached two million ports worldwide, and the port isn't looking to cede control or growth during 2011. Reportedly, IEEE 1394 provides over 1.2 billion consumer, computer and industrial products with connectivity, and there are already plans in place to move to 1.6Gigabit/sec bandwidth in 2011. With that, it'll probably bring FireWire back to the head of the class, and definitely back into the discussion of fastest available connector.

The trade group is estimating that FireWire will see an increase in use over the year, with expansion into higher speed computing, storage and consumer electronics products, with steady growth of 1394-enabled products in the industrial cameras and instrumentation segments. Are you still using a FireWire machine? Have you ever? Will you ever? Or are you sticking with USB for the long-haul?

FireWire Reaches 2 Billion Ports Shipped Worldwide, Will Continue its Strong Growth in 2011

-- IEEE 1394 Provides More than 1.2 Billion Consumer, Computer, Industrial Products with Optimal Connectivity; Will Move to 1.6 Gigabit/second Bandwidth in 2011 --

SAN FRANCISCO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--FireWire, the popular computer, consumer electronics and industrial systems interface, reached the two billion ports milestone in 2010 and will continue its steady growth worldwide throughout 2011, the 1394 Trade Association said today.

"The two billion ports represents a significant new milestone for 1394"
The two billion FireWire ports shipped provide more than 1.2 billion consumer and computer products with reliable, versatile high-speed connections available from developers of FireWire silicon including Texas Instruments, LSI, and PLX Technology, among others. FireWire continues to be applied in a wide range of PCs, storage systems, new generations of set top boxes, industrial and factory automation equipment, and professional audio systems.

The 1394 Trade Association, which made the announcement prior to its first quarter general meeting in Las Vegas, estimates the total of 1394-equipped devices will increase again in 2011. The group foresees continued expansion into higher speed computing, storage and consumer electronics products, with steady growth of 1394-enabled products in the industrial cameras and instrumentation segments, where FireWire is established as the interface of choice. (see December news release at Also, innovative and exciting work being completed by Dap Technology with S1600 and S3200 speeds (see is leading to new market opportunities. In addition, the 1394 standard is moving forward in automotive networking applications.

"The two billion ports represents a significant new milestone for 1394," said Max Bassler, chairman, 1394 Trade Association. "Just as impressive is the innovative and creative application of FireWire in new generations of advanced industrial automation, vision systems, and production equipment. FireWire will continue its steady, stable growth during 2011, as we migrate to the first products operating at 1.6 Gigabit/second bandwidth -- and as 1394 proves itself superior to competitive interfaces in a variety of sectors." Bassler added that there is now a new generation of set top boxes with FireWire, providing data transfer speeds of 800 Megabit/second.

The 1394 Trade Association is a worldwide organization dedicated to the advancement of the IEEE 1394 (FireWire) standard. The 1394TA is in its 16th year of promoting 1394, which is used today in mass-market computer, entertainment, and professional products, and in a wide range of specialty applications such as audio, defense, aerospace, industrial, and robotics products. For more information, visit