The next-gen USB is in the works according to the USB 3.0 Promoter Group. The upcoming version will be built initially on existing USB 3.1 and USB 2.0 technologies to help enable thinner and sleeker product designs, enhance usability and provide a growth path for performance enhancements for future versions of USB, according to the USB 3.0 Promoter Group.
“Intel is excited to see the development of the new thin Type-C connector as it will enable an entirely new super thin class of devices from phones to tablets, to 2-in-1s, to laptops to desktops and a multitude of other more specific usage devices,” said Alex Peleg, Vice President, Platform Engineering Group. “This new industry standards-based thin connector delivering data, power and video is the only connector one will need across all devices.”
“The new Type-C connector furthers USB’s lead in addressing customer desire for more flexibility and higher performance,” said Roland Sperlich, TI Consumer and Computing Interface Product Line Manager. “This allows USB to increase performance and continue to deliver ease of use to several evolving product categories for years to come.”
The USB 3.0 Promoter Group, formed by Hewlett-Packard Company, Intel Corporation, Microsoft Corporation, Renesas Electronics and Texas Instruments, developed the USB 3.0 specification that was released in November 2008. In addition to maintaining and enhancing this specification, the USB 3.0 Promoter Group develops specification requirements to extend or adapt its specifications to support more platform types or use cases where adopting USB 3.0 technology will be beneficial in delivering a more appealing, richer user experience.
“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 report that the USB Type-C specification is due for industry review in the first quarter of 2014 and a final specification is expected to be published by mid 2014. For more information regarding the specification and plans for pre-release industry reviews, the USB Implementers Forum (USB-IF) website can provide more detailed insights.
Key characteristics of the USB Type-C connector and cable solution include:
- An entirely new design tailored to work well with emerging product designs
- New smaller size – similar in size to the existing USB 2.0 Micro-B
- Usability enhancements – users will no longer need to be concerned with plug orientation/cable direction, making it easier to plug in
- The Type-C connector and cable will support scalable power charging
- Scalability – the connector design will scale for future USB bus performance