The Serial ATA International Organization (SATA-IO) is working on a standard for Power Over eSATA, negating the need for a separate power cable.
"Its fast transfer rate and efficient protocol makes eSATA the highest-performing external mainstream storage connection," said Knut Grimsrud, SATA-IO president and Intel Fellow.
"Enhancing eSATA with power delivery will provide a new level of convenience to the designer and the end user.
"By eliminating the need for a separate power connection, customers can more easily expand their storage, making Serial ATA an even more attractive solution for mainstream storage applications."
Presently USB 2.0 and Firewire-based devices enjoy the advantage of single power and data bus. Bringing such advantages to eSATA-based storage would be a great advantage to portable devices.
The specification is expected to be finalized and devices made available by the second half of 2008.
eSATA to shed the power plug (News.com)
New standard plans power delivery via eSATA (Ars Technica)
Spec will let external SATA drives cut power cables (Computer World)