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  1. What Is
March 27, 2017

What is FireWire?

First developed in the late 1980s by Apple.

By James Nunns

Firewire is a way of connecting devices together or to a computer.

FireWire is a name given by Apple to IEEE 1394, which is an interface standard for a serial bus for high-speed communications and real-time data transfer.

As a serial bus, FireWire transfers information one bit at a time. Developed in the 1980s and 1990s by Apple, the tech major intended FireWire to be a replacement for the parallel SCSI bus, while also providing connectivity for video and digital audio equipment.

Was FireWire popular?

FireWire was initially popular among users who used it to connect data storage devices and digital cameras, although it was also popular in industrial systems. It was preferred over USB 2.0 due to its greater effective speed and power distribution.

To develop IEEE 1394 required the use of 261 patents that were held by 10 companies. The companies holding these patents formed a patent pool called MPEG LA, to whom they licensed patents.

MPEG LA then sublicenses these patents to companies implementing IEEE 1394 under the patent pool license. A royalty of $0.25 per unit is then payable to the manufacturer upon completion of each product.

 

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