Intel’s new i225-V chip will bring 2.5Gbps Ethernet into the mainstream

Intel's new i225-V chip will bring 2.5Gbps Ethernet into the mainstream

Intel’s new i225-V chip will bring 2.5Gbps Ethernet into the mainstream

Expect 2.5Gbps Ethernet to appear on a lot of upcoming motherboards, because Intel plans to launch its low-cost i225-V “Foxville” ethernet PHY controller in the near future. 

As the name implies, 2.5Gb Ethernet offers a 2.5x speed boost over today’s Gb Ethernet controllers, enabling faster transfer speeds over home networks while retaining the ability to operate using CAT5 and CAT6 Ethernet cables. 10Gb Ethernet components require a different cabling standard, which hampered the standard’s success as a consumer-grade standard. 

With the company’s new Cascade Lake-X series of processors, Intel advertises support for 2.5Gb Ethernet. This doesn’t come in the form of integrated CPU support, but through the introduction of new X299 motherboards with integrated 2.5Gb Ethernet add-on components. 

Today, Intel is the most commonly used creator of 1Gb ethernet PHY controllers, which are used in almost all modern PC motherboards, including those for AMD processors. Some of Intel’s rivals already offer 2.5Gb Ethernet chips, but Intel is likely to be the manufacturer that brings the standard into the mainstream. 

As we move towards the release of Cascade Lake-X and other new Intel platforms, expect to see 2.5Gb Ethernet start to become a more heavily advertised feature on consumer-grade motherboards and systems. Sadly, it looks like 10Gb Ethernet remains far from the mainstream market, despite being available for over a decade. 

Given 2.5GbE’s support for today’s CAT5/CAT6 cables, the upgrade to 2.5GbE will be seamless for most users. Even so, the standard change will require upgrades on both the device and router side to take advantage of the standard’s boosted transfer speeds. 

Intel's new i225-V chip will bring 2.5Gbps Ethernet into the mainstream  

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