Only Connect: On USB Type-C connectors

Welcome to another post in the series by Nick Locke, of Nicab Ltd, who has over 15 years experience in the electronics manufacturing industry specialising in interconnection cable assembly.

Apple's lightning connector

Apple’s rival lightning connector

According to USB.ORG, the development of the new USB Type C Connector is well on the way with initial design released under review by the very distinguished panel of members to agree specifications.

Exciting times I am sure you will agree! A couple of features we can expect is for the new connector to be a smaller size geared towards smaller tablet devices and to be non polarised, in other words the connector will be able to be plugged in any way around.

I am sure we are all familiar with trying to plug in USB connectors the wrong way around. Literally no one knows how to plug in USB connectors first time!

According to the specification documentation we can look forward to the Key characteristics of the USB Type-C connector and cable solution to include:

  • An entirely new design tailored to work well with emerging product designs
  • New smaller size – similar in size to the existing USB 2.0 Micro-B
  • Usability enhancements – users will no longer need to be concerned with plug orientation/cable direction, making it easier to plug in
  • The Type-C connector and cable will support scalable power charging
  • Scalability – the connector design will scale for future USB bus performance

You can read the full document here:

I am sure you will agree that if the committee around the USB standard gets this right then we will be seeing USB around for some time to come.

Nick Locke, Nicab Ltd

See alsoApple Lightning plugs have a chip inside

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