Difference Between Similar Terms and Objects

Difference Between USB and Firewire

usb_firewireUSB vs Firewire

USB and Firewire did not start out as competing technologies. Firewire, which was developed by Apple along with a few other tech companies was supposed to provide high speed connections to devices that needs them. USB, which stands for Universal Serial Bus and developed by a group of companies that included Intel and Microsoft among others, was initially intended to replace low speed connections that are used by most computer peripherals.

Initially, the speed of USB devices can only reach up to 1.5Mb/s which is terribly slow but quite sufficient for the devices that it was meant to work for. Firewire leaves USB in the dust in terms of speed reaching up to 400Mb/s. This is often attributed to the level of complexity in the circuitry. USB devices depend on the host controller while each Firewire node is independent of each other and can communicate to other nodes on its own.

Since Firewire is meant to deliver high speed, it is also designed to work with high power drain devices. It can therefore provide much more power to devices that connect to it. It can theoretically deliver up to 60 watts of energy, which is 24 times more than the 2.5 watts that you can get from USB.

The complexity of Firewire means that it is more difficult and more expensive to create devices that are compliant to it, regardless of its speed requirements. USB does not have this problem because later versions that operate at higher speeds are still backwards compatible to older and slower devices. This means that even if you have a 2.0 USB port, you can still stick your USB 1.0 keyboard on it and it would work perfectly. Only high speed devices would need to conform to higher standard and low speed devices can follow the lower standard which is less complex and much cheaper. This is the reason behind the quick proliferation of devices that utilize the USB standard despite being inherently slower than Firewire. The list of devices that have moved from using other connection method include keyboards, mice, speakers, game controllers, printers, and so many more.

1. Firewire was developed by Apple along with some other contributors while USB was developed by Intel and Microsoft with help from other companies too
2. Firewire is much faster than USB
3. Firewire circuitry is more complex than USB
4. Firewire can provide a lot more power to devices compared to USB
5. USB is more flexible compared to Firewire
6. USB is widely in use especially with small computer peripherals

Sharing is caring!

Search DifferenceBetween.net :

Email This Post Email This Post : If you like this article or our site. Please spread the word. Share it with your friends/family.



  1. Difference Between USB 1.0 and USB 2.0 | Difference Between | USB 1.0 vs USB 2.0
  2. Difference Between LG Viewty and LG Viewty Lite | Difference Between | LG Viewty vs LG Viewty Lite
  3. Difference Between Samsung S5233 and Nokia 5530 | Difference Between | Samsung S5233 vs Nokia 5530
  4. Difference Between Honda Civic and Hyundai Elantra | Difference Between | Honda Civic vs Hyundai Elantra
  5. Difference Between DVI and Mini DVI | Difference Between | DVI vs Mini DVI
  6. Difference Between Netbook and iphone | Difference Between | Netbook vs iphone
  7. Difference Between Guitar Hero and Rock Band | Difference Between | Guitar Hero vs Rock Bvs

Leave a Response

Please note: comment moderation is enabled and may delay your comment. There is no need to resubmit your comment.

Articles on DifferenceBetween.net are general information, and are not intended to substitute for professional advice. The information is "AS IS", "WITH ALL FAULTS". User assumes all risk of use, damage, or injury. You agree that we have no liability for any damages.

See more about : , ,
Protected by Copyscape Plagiarism Finder