Last year Apple dazzled and annoyed us with a new sleek standard plug for all of its devices, which it dubbed the Lightning connector. Many consumers were annoyed that they would have to replace or purchase converters for the old style Apple connectors. Now it looks like consumers may soon have to replace all of their USB cables, as there seems to be a new USB connector in the works called Type-C.
The overdue USB update will follow existing USB 3.1 specifications and is expected to be finalized by the middle of 2014. Intended to replace the terribly clunky design of the current generation USB 3.0 plugs, the Type-C is expected to be around the same size as a Micro USB plug and Apple Lightning connector.
USB 3.0 Promoter Group chairman Brad Saunders says the Type-C will “meet evolving design trends in terms of size and usability”. Alex Peleg of Intel adds that Type-C “will enable an entirely new super-thin class of devices from phones to tablets, to 2-in-1’s, to laptops to desktops,” and “this new industry standards-based thin connector delivering data, power, and video is the only connector one will need across all devices.” The goal of this development is to reduce the number of cords laying around your house.
Because the Type-C is a new connector, the USB 3.0 Promoter group will need to develop a specification for adapters and cables so all existing USB devices will not be rendered completely obsolete.
I’m sure you’ve tried to plug in the USB end to your computer only to have to reverse it twice before it fits. While we don’t know if both ends will be reversible, we do hope that the device manufacturers do consider updating both ends; although this would all existing laptops USB plugs obsolete, it would surely make plugging in a USB cord to your computer a lot simpler.