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Print 47 comment(s) - last by superstition.. on Dec 7 at 10:45 PM

It's meant to enable a new class of thinner devices

There's a new USB plug on the horizon, and this upgraded version will finally be reversible. 

According to the USB 3.0 Promoter Group, the next-generation USB is called "Type-C," and development on the new connector has already begun. 

Type-C, which will be built on existing USB 3.1 specifications, will finally have a feature many have been waiting for: reversibility. 

Other plugs -- like Apple's Lightning connector -- are already reversible, allowing users to easily plug right in without trying to see if they have it upside down or not.


USB is about to get a facelift. [SOURCE: wikimedia]

Type-C is expected to be about the size of a Micro USB plug, and it's meant to enable a new class of thinner devices in the way of phones, tablets, convertibles, laptops, desktops and emerging products. 

“While USB technology is well established as the favored choice for connecting and powering devices, we recognize the need to develop a new connector to meet evolving design trends in terms of size and usability,” said Brad Saunders, USB 3.0 Promoter Group Chairman. “The new Type-C connector will fit well with the market’s direction and affords an opportunity to lay a foundation for future versions of USB.” 

Type-C isn't compatible with existing USBs, but the USB 3.0 Promoter Group will have a specification for adapters and cables so that many existing USB chargers out there aren't immediately considered obsolete.

Type-C should be finalized in mid-2014. 

Back in August, The USB 3.0 Promoter Group announced new USB 3.1 specifications that allow SuperSpeed USB to operate at speeds of up to 10 Gbps.

Source: USB



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USB sucks
By Argon18 on 12/4/2013 11:34:49 AM , Rating: -1
USB needs to die and go away. It's fine for connecting keyboards and mice and joysticks, you know, what it was originally intended for.

USB is horrible at bulk data transfer, painfully slow. It uses crufty old PIO mode for moving data, while Firewire, SATA, PCIe, Thunderbolt, SCSI, etc. all use the much-faster DMA mode. What does this mean? It means USB struggles to achieve even 50% of its theoretical max, while Firewire, eSATA, etc. can do 95%.

USB is horrible for bus power, for charging devices. It only provides a paltry 2.5 watts (500 mA x 5v) which makes modern electronics like smartphones or tablets take ages to charge up. If they ever charge up. Many tablets require a special non-standard USB charger that delivers 10w of power. Firewire on the other hand, provides a huge 15w of power, and has done so since the 1990's.

It's time to wipe the slate clean and start over. Give us an external interconnect that doesn't suck. One that doesn't have a dozen different connector types, one that doesn't suck at charging devices, and one that doesn't suck at transferring data.




RE: USB sucks
By dgingerich on 12/4/2013 12:50:57 PM , Rating: 5
1. They already have a standard modification for USB 3 for bulk data transfers: UAS, or USB attached SCSI. It's making its way around, and has for over a year, but many motherboard manufacturers aren't using it because of what they see as lack of demand. The demand is certainly out there, but average users don't know much about it, and the idiots deciding on what to cut from motherboard design and external hard drive design are completely out of touch. They seem to be completely oblivious to the fact that if they add it and advertise it, it will sell better than those devices without it.

2. you incorrectly list PCIe and Thunderbolt as if they are storage transfer standards. They are general use standards, geared for general expansion of computer systems. Of course they have DMA transfer access. That's so they can accommodate storage controllers. On top of that, Thunderbolt is pretty much just an external PCIe coupled with DisplayPort signaling. Don't include Thunderbolt and PCIe in the same list as Firewire, SATA, or SCSI.

3. USB 3 allows for up to .9A on 5V, expanding the use for USB 3 devices to 4.5W. It hasn't been stuck at .5A since USB 2 was a standard. In addition, there are many motherboards out there, mine included, that are built to handle up to 1.5A on the old USB 2.0 ports. The power limitation you complain about here haven't been a major problem in ages. Besides, most people don't use their computers for charging their phones or tablets anyway.

4. Stop promoting firewire as some great thing. Sure, it could handle more power, and DMA transfers, but I know from experience that the data transfer rates on 400Mb firewire are about the same as USB 2.0, only with slightly less CPU usage. Years ago, I went out and bought a firewire enclosure for my backups, but was completely unimpressed. It didn't give me any advantages and cost me an extra $20. Apple pushed it as a standard, and it failed. (They're pushing Thunderbolt now, too, and it isn't going very well because of cable costs. I doubt it will catch up in adoption rates with USB 3 at all. Who wants to spend $50 on cables? USB 3.1 will beat it into the ground.) Even the latest version couldn't keep up, even slightly, with USB 3. It sounds more like you're one of those Apple fans with this kind of promotion.

For the most part, people want a single type of connector for their devices on their computers. USB provides that better than most. It's popular because of that.

Right now, the transition from 2.0 to 3.0 has been stalled for a bit, mostly because of Intel's lack of movement on the matter. (Even on their latest chipset, they didn't make it so that all the ports could be USB 3, like they did with USB 2.0 right away. They're being lazy right now.) It's on the way, but not as fast as most people would like.


RE: USB sucks
By Totally on 12/4/2013 7:57:44 PM , Rating: 2
Good post but I'd say Intel's feet dragging can be more attributed a conflict of interest since they developed Thunderbolt for Apple. Can't blame them, since I myself wouldn't be thrilled about shooting myself in the foot.


RE: USB sucks
By superstition on 12/7/2013 10:45:24 PM , Rating: 2
1. Thunderbolt is an Intel technology, not an Apple technology. Intel invented it.

2. Firewire 400 is ancient. There have been several major revisions of the spec since it was finalized.


RE: USB sucks
By CaedenV on 12/4/13, Rating: 0
RE: USB sucks
By momorere on 12/4/13, Rating: -1
"Well, we didn't have anyone in line that got shot waiting for our system." -- Nintendo of America Vice President Perrin Kaplan

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