Reversible USB connector finalized, ready for new cables and devices

By Scorpus ยท 25 replies
Aug 13, 2014
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  1. In late 2013, it was announced that a new type of USB connector would be developed for the first time in 17 years. The main advantage to this new connector, known as the Type-C connector, is that it's fully reversible,...

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  2. Geforcepat

    Geforcepat TS Booster Posts: 140   +16

    This will have a very slow takeoff not being backwards compatible.
    racer_100power likes this.
  3. Burty117

    Burty117 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 3,144   +911

    Well in EU they are making it law that all handset manufacturers have to use the same connector on the phone by 2015 so this is quite timely for them.

    I know Apple also welcomed the connector, I hope the new iPhone would have this connector but probably not, I'm waiting for the 6s anyways.
  4. cmbjive

    cmbjive TS Booster Posts: 777   +138

    Awesome. I always hate having to fight to make sure the USB plug is right-side up before I plug it in.
    SalaSSin likes this.
  5. So, with new cables and new devices having a new connector, would that also mean a revamp on USB innards so that the recently mentioned security flaw however large or small it really is, will be negated ?
  6. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 8,647   +3,274

    Rule of thumb: The slit on the plug 'normally' faces down if you're using a horizontal receptacle.
  7. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 8,647   +3,274

    Not so. You're bound to be able to get cheap adapters for the older style plugs and receptacles and USB 3.1 is backward compatible with older USB standards.
  8. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 8,647   +3,274

    Enjoy your wait. I'll try stick around for the release of the iPhone 31, by then I may have had a change of heart about Apple or I'll be dead but sadly I see the latter happening before the former.
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2014
    SalaSSin likes this.
  9. VitalyT

    VitalyT Russ-Puss Posts: 3,660   +1,948

    This is not really a USB where U stands for Universal. USB of every generation was backward compatible, that which maintained its good value. Introducing a non-backward compatible connector is going away from what USB is known for, and such won't receive a wide adaptation.

    I am more interested in Thunderbolt 3 (40Gbit) that will be introduced before the end of this year, which in good faith maintains backward compatibility. That, plus DisplayPort 1.3 are the two really interesting standards coming to the market this year.
  10. Burty117

    Burty117 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 3,144   +911

    Meh, I loved my 3GS, the best phone I've owned to date was the 4s but I managed to damage it, when I went to get it replaced they said I could have a free upgrade to the 5, I agreed and I really don't like the iPhone 5, lesson learned? Only go with the models ending in an "s". Apple have usually perfected the design by then. But as they get on in the models less and less is changing so I could see the 6s lasting me a while, hell I would still have my 4s today had I not taken that stupid upgrade :(
  11. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 8,647   +3,274

    Personally I think Apple products are generally fine but it's the company itself and their corporate BS-ing I can't tolerate so I steer clear.
  12. "It's basically two USB 3.1 connectors in the one package, with either the top set of nine pins or the bottom set being used for data transfers depending on how you plug it in."

    Seems like a waste only using nine of the eighteen pins at a time. Surely using eighteen pins in both the plug and receptacle could provide more performance.
  13. pmcardle

    pmcardle TS Booster Posts: 117   +22

    The Universal reference is the actual interface connecting with multiple device types. There's already the standard, mini and micro sized connectors. They'll make cables with the standard size on one end and the new micro-B on the other. The interface it uses in backward compatible, the connector isn't.
  14. Jad Chaar

    Jad Chaar Elite Techno Geek Posts: 6,515   +974

    A reversible plug should have been implemented a while ago... it is an absolute necessity IMO. There are plenty of people who struggle to plug in USBs because of this :D.
    Skidmarksdeluxe likes this.
  15. supertech

    supertech TS Member Posts: 84   +10

    Finally, I'm tired if dealing with different headers, connectors, cables, all for the same technology.
  16. I won't call it a waste, I'd rather say it's "reserved for future expansion".

    Sooner or later, there will be companies making good use of these two sets of signals, for doubling the throughput to 20Gbps and/or conveying display signals.
  17. Frank Barnett

    Frank Barnett TS Rookie Posts: 61   +6

    Maybe these people need not use computers!! lol
  18. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 8,647   +3,274

    I agree. Better late than never.
  19. Adhmuz

    Adhmuz TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,828   +633

    To all the people who "Struggle" to use a USB connector, only THE most common connector currently known to man, maybe stop being morons and realize what your doing before complaining its too hard, because honestly I don't see the big freakin' deal here. It's like saying HDMI is too complicated because it's a one way plug, or heck ALL PC wires are pretty much direction sensitive and the need to make something bidirectional cost money and is quite a waste of materials. Have humans become more stupid with time to the point where plugging in a single wire is too complicated? Do these people drive cars? Heck I'm amazed they can operate their smart phones to begin with... Go back 20 years, people use to be able to program VCRs, a much more complicated operation then the current, plug cable, done experience everyone wants these days.
  20. I just don't see how up/down on one end is really an issue. When I saw "reversible", I thought that both ends would be the same. Also not a serious issue, but convenient.
  21. Technology is a wonderful thing; except when we use it to *****-proof the world, then I hate it. Two thumbs down.
  22. Jad Chaar

    Jad Chaar Elite Techno Geek Posts: 6,515   +974

    It may already be simple to you, but to the average joe, it may not be. It sounds dumb but it makes sense.
  23. Emexrulsier

    Emexrulsier TS Evangelist Posts: 574   +71

    That's not the law change at all.. The change is that "smartphone companies must make the plug that connects to the electricity supply the same. However, the connector to the phone itself doesn't have to be the same."

    It just means you will probably get a usb style plug with every device and then the usual bespoke cable (usb to micro for example). The idea is so that you can change phones and still use the old plug without being force to throw it all. The cable though would still have to be binned. Also this law isn't coming into force until 2017.
  24. Burty117

    Burty117 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 3,144   +911

    Ok, well I'm going by what I read in the BBC News website:

    "The design of charger being favoured uses a Micro USB connector - a format used on many handsets and other devices already."

    Since then I'm fairly certain another article was made as Apple had now responded and agreed the new 3.1 USB style plug (per this article) would work. I can't find that story though :/

    So if you Google "Europe universal smartphone chargers" you'll also find quite a few articles explaining the same thing, this law also includes the connector on the phone.

    Edit: But you are right in that this law doesn't come into effect until 2017, that's a real shame because the 6s was going to be my upgrade and knowing Apple, they'll try and keep to the lightning connector for as long as possible :(
  25. pcar916

    pcar916 TS Rookie

    Unless there is additional functionality in the new form factor there is nothing terribly wrong with the existing connectors that can't be fixed with a simple tactile clue on the grip. Samsung(and others) took care of the problem with a asymmetrical connectors. For instance, when you hold it between your thumb and fingers, the feel of the "thumb-side" is different. Nothing more than a dimple or groove will let you know which side should be touching the thumb or fingers. You can do it yourself with a knife or file to scratch a shallow groove into it.

    Changing an entire specification is big deal and really expensive for manufacturers. All that aside, unless the glaring security flaw is addressed, the form factor for this connector is a distraction.

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