To USB or Not to USB


The State of USB – Part 1 – USB 3.1 and USB Type C (USB-C)

The State of USB – Part 1 – USB 3.1 and USB Type C (USB-C)

How many engineers does it take to change a lightbulb.

– None, they just define darkness as the new industry standard.

How do you make a hot dog stand?

Steal its chair.

What’s orange and sounds like a parrot?

– A carrot!

System makers now ship wide range of products with Type C.  In addition, to USB 3.1 Add-In cards for PCs and the Nokia N1 Tablet,  we now have SanDisk USB flash drives, and mobile phones in China.   You can buy a MacBook today with Type C only, and order a Google Chromebook Pixel 2015 with USB Type-C (and some USB Type A’s also) directly from Google.

TypeC as of June 2015

Maybe the Windows 10 enabled Dell Venue 11 will ship before the end of the year?  It’s got USB Type-C as standard.

The HP Pavilion x2 Starts Shipping July 21HP Pavillion x2 with Type C June 2015

And the phone maker OnePlus bets big on USB Type-C.  They launch the OnePlus 2 phone on July 27 with a Type C connector.  It will be the very first Virtual Reality product launch/media event ever (apparently, according to OnePlus.

Here’s the source for the Cable Pictures

Thunderbolt 3 and USB Type C

“Thunderbolt™ 3 is computer port nirvana…” Words never used together before, but now used in the Thunderbolt blog .

Thunderbolt 3 (TB3) supports

–          Thunderbolt 3 at 40 Gbps

–          Displayport 1.2 (8 lanes supporting up to two 4K displays)

–          USB 3.1 at 10 Gbps

–          PCIe Gen 3 (4 lanes)


TB3 uses the USB-C connector as the only connector going forward for TB3, supporting all these features.  They also promote USB power delivery for 15W to 100 W of power in either direction. (This requires more chips and software intervention).  (Note: the leader for Thunderbolt is Jason Ziller, formerly Chair of the USB-IF who launched the USB 2.0 standard back in 1999)
In an interview with ZDNet, the representatives of the innovative inventing company of TB3, indicate that TB3 could ship in as many as 100 million units.  (At least I think this is what the article says, it’s a little unclear if it’s with regard to Type C or TB3. The writer indicates it’s TB3).

Paradoxically, boosting the speed of Thunderbolt to 40 Gbps, and adopting a USB port actually keeps Thunderbolt going as a standard. It’s 4x the speed of USB 3.1 and supports those people using SSD Raid devices for storage and editing of off-PC content (and of course delivering DisplayPort video).

I suspect, but don’t know, that the company building TB3 will have a single chip that will be able to support TB3 and USB 3.1 all in one. I’m not sure exactly how this will be done.

AnandTech writes a superb summary of TB3, read it here.

First USB-C Docking Stations

Predictably, to support the Apple MacBook, OWC started taking pre-orders for the OWC Docking Station delivering in October.   It’s called a USB 3.1 Docking Station, so for most people, this will confuse them into thinking it supports 10 Gbps.  In fact, USB 3.1 supports all speeds and this one supports what we call USB 3.1 Gen 1 speeds, or 5 Gbps.

 Oneplus Type C

oneplus-2-usb-1 - Type C Cable

Picture Source:

Press Release:

Expect more Type-C docking stations to be announced in the coming months.

To subscribe, click on this link:
Subscribe using your RSS feed, Outlook or News Reader like Flipbook, Google Elements, Pocket, or just bookmark us.

The First USB Type C battery, probably with Power Delivery

This new product from MOS will charge not just your MacBook but 2 full sized tablets at the same time.  It’s 15,000 mAh which is about the size of 3 laptop batteries (although the largest USB battery I’ve found to date is 20,000mAh).  It also has a Hub.

Type C USB Battery - Charging 3 devices -Gizmodo 557a5b9dc098db5329e27fff_MOS-GO_Charging_Infinite

There’s a little more information here:

It’s not clear to me if this battery also has USB Power Delivery, or only Type C’s increased power over USB Battery Charging or USB 3.0 style charging. More on those specific values in a later post.

That’s all for the moment. The next entry will be on IoT, the State of USB 3.1, or something else.

The Science of Bacon

The Science of the appeal of food pictures

Share and Enjoy:
  • Digg
  • Facebook
  • Google Bookmarks
  • Print
  • Twitter
  • StumbleUpon
  • LinkedIn
  • RSS