1394b, the next incarnation of the FireWire interface, will be ready in the first quarter of 2000, according to the FireWire Trade Association.

The new standard will double the speed of its previous version, with 800Mbps silicon. It will also have simpler circuitry and an extended reach.

The technical draft has been sent to ballot, and will be given a final edit this month. The final draft will then be sent to the Microcomputer Standards Committee (MSC) of the IEEE in January.

Zayante – a company founded by the original FireWire development team – will have a fully compliant design ready for licensing "soon", the trade organization said.