Thunderbolt 3 Macs should begin appearing this year as early as April (or so one can hope).
TB3 is an equalizer, with enough bandwidth that a Mac with two or even just one TB3 port can do a solid job with peripherals. That’s because Thunderbolt 3 doubles the bandwidth of Thunderbolt 2.
There are other interesting aspects also:
- External SSDs will be able to run at well over 2GB/sec (latency may be higher than internal PCIe SSDs).
- Thunderbolt networking will be viable on the same bus as a fast external storage unit.
- USB and Thunderbolt will share a common cable, leading to simpler and more useful peripherals. That changeover will take time however—at least 1-2 years.
- External 5K displays will emerge that can work via a single TB3 cable.
All very cool stuff that will level the playing field in terms of choosing a Mac. The differences for most users will come down to CPU choices and maximum memory.