Firewire FAQs

FireWire may be in more and more households, but it is far from nearing household name status. As a result, it’s time to eliminate confusion regarding terminology and basic operating fundamentals.

WiFi and FireWire, same thing? No, not at all actually. Despite similarly inverted phonetic properties, there is actually little to no correlation between WiFi, which represents wireless internet service, and FireWire, which is a wire based connectivity technology. Confusion may arise in that there are in fact wireless connectivity tools as well; FireWire simply isn’t one of them.

FireWire, i.Link, Lynx and and IEEE 1394, same thing? Essentially, yes. These are all synonyms for the same technology, differentiated by provided by company for branding purposes. FireWire is to Apple, what i.Link is to Sony, Lynx is to Texas Instruments, and IEEE 1394 is to generic terminology.

What are the key benefits of FireWire? Perhaps FireWire’s two defining characteristics are its speed and simplicity. FireWire enables computers to connect to fellow devices through a purely peer to peer network. This helps it to move at higher speeds than comparable USB technology while not chancing as many inherent security risks as are commonly found in WiFi hookups.

I’ve heard rumors of USB 3.0, how will FireWire compare? USB 3.0 is the next progression in IEEE 1394′s main competitor technology. Though like all USB models before it, FireWire will differ in that USB will still operate under a bus master format (meaning no true peer to peer network, as mentioned above). USB 3.0 will undoubtedly serve as an upgrade to traditional USB technology, but will not usurp IEEE 1394, at least in this opinion, as the premier wire-centric hookup option on the market.

Firewire VS. USB Debate

Both FireWire and USB technology is admittedly similar, helping users to transfer data from device to device with as little difficulty as possible. While they are similar, that is not to say the two are interchangeable, each operating under separate setups leading to a degree of differences that may cater better to individual needs.