USB evolves to be smaller and reversible
We’ve all suffered the First World problem of not being able to shove our USB in the port the right way first time. The law of sod states that, even though there’s only 2 ways (the right way and the wrong way) to plug in your USB jack, it will probably take you 3 tries to get it in. That’s going to change.
Work has thankfully begun on a new generation of USB that will break compatibility with existing connectors in order to improve ease of use and allow for thinner devices. More importantly, the next USB plug will finally be reversible just like Apple’s Lightning connector.
This that the near future promises us the peace of no more blindly jamming the connector towards the port, the plug will always be the right side up.
The upcoming connector, called Type-C, is designed for the USB 3.1 specification and scheduled to be finalised by the middle of 2014. The plug is said to be the size of the MicroUSB plug and sport an array of new features including scalable power charging and support data rates nearing 10 Gbit/s.
“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.”
The USB 3.0 Promoter Group didn’t include any pictures of the upcoming connector in their press release.
Since Type-C is an entirely new connector, the USB 3.0 Promoter Group will also have to include a specification for adapters and cables so that the countless USB chargers gathered in your cable draw don’t instantly become obsolete. This also means your tech will also need to be upgraded over time.
I think that this is a small price to pay so as not to perform the USB flip-flop every time you need to plug in some gadge.