First renders of the reversible USB 3.1 cable released

First renders of the reversible USB 3.1 cable leak
By Simon Sage on 2 Apr 2014 09:54 am

We’ve become accustomed to knowing one end of a USB cable has to go into a computer or charger, and the other end goes into your phone, but there is a future where you can use either end in either thingie, and this is what that utopian paradise looks like. The USB Implementers Forum is showing off two USB 3.1 connector standards today.

Type-C shows off a design similar to the microUSB format we all know and love, except it’s the same at both ends, and there’s no set top or bottom for those plugs. This reversible tip is a feature Apple’s been getting an early lead with using their Lightning connector, though the more direct comparison would be Apple’s Thunderbolt. The Micro-B cable shows a slightly wider mobile connector we’ve already seen cropping up in devices like the Samsung Galaxy Note 3

Why do we need a new USB standard? Well, increased data speeds for one. We’re talking 10 Gbps, versus the 5 Gbps available on USB 3.0. Two, you can expect faster charging times. We’ll be getting between 3 A and 5 A of current, up from 1.5 A. All of these new USB plugs will be backwards compatible with the 3.0 products in market (with an adapter, maybe?), so no need to worry about things getting too wonky with your existing hardware. In any case, it’ll be cool to start seeing micro-sized plugs built into PCs and chargers.

USB 3.1 port render

Related: Usb Usb 3.1 News

Reader comments

First renders of the reversible USB 3.1 cable released

1 Comment

The reversible tip is the better feature. In the dark I can tell which end is which but trying to get the plug the right way up in my phone with out switching a light on at night is a pain. One day I'm going to damage the connector on my phone.

Same with USB on the back of my Mac mini that I have to fumble round the back.

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