USB Type C is here: Faster charging, quicker data, smaller mobiles and the death of AC laptop chargers
At last the new USB Type C connector is ready for mass production. It will come with reversible ends, featuring the same small connector on either end. But it means so much more for new smartphones, tablets and even laptops.
The new USB Type C will mean faster charging, quicker data transfer rates and thanks to the smaller connectors, smaller phones can be made too. The Type-C plug is compatible with the USB 3.1 standard meaning super fast data transfer rates.
Faster charging, smaller gadgets
The big sell for most users is going to be faster charging. USB Type C can deliver power at up to 100 watts at 20 volts. This means that larger devices can now be charged from USB, including laptops and monitors. Say goodbye to the clunky AC adapters we've been lugging around until now.
In real world use this will mean much faster charging of compatible mobiles, tablets and now even laptops. This can be done while transferring data at the same time, something previous standards could not always manage.
This should also mean the need for a separate power port, with large innards, will be gone allowing manufacturers to make even smaller laptops for example.
The only downside to a new USB is the need for all new gadgets to fit it. While these gadgets can be smaller thanks to smaller USB ports it will mean older kit becomes out-dated.
USB will be offering an adapter of course but if Apple's Lightning connector change is anything to go by these won't be used for long. And like the Lightning connector USB Type C should work either way up with an 8.4mm by 2.6mm connector end.
There will be plenty of adapters making USB Type C backwards compatible so anyone can adopt it immediately.
USB Type C will have a similar sized end to the smaller end of current USB 2.0 cables, except it will be like that at both ends. This is an 18-pin connector which, it’s claimed, will last the same 10,000 cycles as Micro-USB does.
Better data bandwidth
USB Type C is compatible with up to 10Gbps data transfer rates. That means a full movie can be transferred in a single second, theoretically. With wireless data being used more often but being limited, this new USB standard may cause a resurgence of cable connection use as super high-speed data rates are required for things like gaming on tablets connected to TVs.
The USB Type C connector has been designed so that it can be scaled with future developments in speed meaning the shape itself shouldn't need to change again for a long time.
When can we expect to see USB Type C? Certainly in 2015 as it's ready to go now. But it's a case of waiting for manufacturers to adopt it. Since it means saving money on power adapters and shrinking gadgets it shouldn't be long before all phones, tablets and laptops start using USB Type C.