If you think USB 3.1 Gen 1 and USB 3.1 Gen 2 is confusing, think again. At WDC 2019, the USB Implementers Forum aka USB-IF decided to absorb the existing USB 3.1 into the USB 3.2 standards.
A Quick Recap On The Current USB Standards
USB 3.0 was first announced back in 2008, which is capable to deliver up to 5Gbps data transfer rate as compared to the USB 2.0 at that time. The 5Gbps data transfer rate was referred to as SuperSpeed and blue colored USB connectors was introduced so that USB 3.0 is easier to distinguish from USB 2.0.
At year 2013, USB-IF announced the USB 3.1 standard as the successor of the USB 3.0 that offers 10Gpbs data transfer rate, twice the amount of what USB 3.0 is capable of. The new standard was given the name USB 3.1 Gen 2 and the previous USB 3.0 was renamed to USB 3.1 Gen 1. The USB 3.1 Gen 2 is twice as fast as the USB 3.1 Gen 1 and can be used on the existing USB Type-A and Type-C connector. At the same time, they also defined the SuperSpeed+ transfer mode while retaining the existing SuperSpeed of the USB 3.1 Gen 1.
The 20Gbps USB 3.2 that we know today was announced in year 2017, alongside two new SuperSpeed+ transfer mode over USB type-C connector using two-lane operation to deliver up to 20Gbps data transfer rate without the need of shorter cable to achieve the advertised speed.
New USB 3.2 Standard Announced At WDC 2019
Based on USB-IF’s announcement at WDC 2019, the new USB 3.2 standard now includes the existing USB 3.1 Gen 1 and USB 3.1 Gen 2. The data transfer rate still remain the same for all, but under a new brand name ‘SuperSpeed USB’.