What’s New Reversible USB Cable?

Kinkoo-USB-vs-Lightning-FrustrationsRecently the USB Implementers Forum announced that it has finalized the design of new reversible USB interface – the standardised connection for data transfers between electronic devices.

It means users will no longer have to worry which way round the part is facing when plugging it into a device.

The new USB Type-C is small enough for mobiles but robust enough for laptops and tablets, the designer said, and it can completely replace every size of all current USB connectors.


The Upsides

Speed: USB Type-C can go as fast as any USB standard and it will launch with compliancy for USB 3.1. It will include faster data transfer speeds of up to 10GBbps, that’s twice the speed of the already pretty quick USB 3.0 standard.

Power: With USB Type-C USB 3.1 will support up to 2 Amps at 5 Volts, as well as 5A at either 12V or 20V. This means not only will devices charge far faster, but almost anything can be powered.

Reversible: Like Apple’s Lightning cable, the USB cable with USB Type-C will become reversible killing off that most irritating of first world problems and meaning no more fumbling around.

Compliance: The USB Type-C standard was finalised earlier this month by USB-IF meaning it will be an official standard just like USB Type-A, Type-B, Mini and Micro USB.

The Downsides

Adaptors: While USB Type-C is backwards compatible with previous USB standards it is not physically compatible. This means Type-C cables will need adaptors to fit into existing slots. Given the standard is USB-IF ratified they are likely to cost peanuts, but it still means disruption.

Apple: Recent iPhone 6 leaks show Apple is working on its own form of reversible USB Type-A. Because this is not being developed in conjunction with the USB-IF, it would give Apple the potential to charge license fees for it and is therefore likely to detract from the company’s desire to drive adoption of Type-C.