The Next-Generation USB Plug Will Be Smaller and Reversible

Micro USB plug image by comedy_nose on Flickr

Micro USB plug image by comedy_nose on FlickrAre you tired of blindly jamming your USB plug into your computer, only to realize you’re inserting it upside-down? Soon there will no longer be a need to do this. The USB 3.0 Promoter Group announced yesterday that a smaller, reversible USB plug similar to Apple’s Lightning connector is in the works and is expected to debut in the middle of 2014.

The new USB connector, labeled Type-C, will support scaled USB performance to meet the needs of future 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.”

Most notably, the Promoter Group notes that with the Type-C connector users will no longer need to worry about the orientation of the USB plug or which direction the cable is running in, hinting that in the future all devices will incorporate one universal USB receptacle. The next-generation USB will also include scalable power charging and will support data rates nearing 10 Gbit/s, according to TechCrunch.

The sleeker design of the Type-C connector will allow for even thinner electronic devices. Alex Peleg, vice president of the Group’s platform engineering division, said:

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.”

Unfortunately the Type-C plugs will not fit into existing USB ports, meaning you’ll need to wait until your next computer to take full advantage of the new USB capabilities. In the meantime adapters will enable you to use Type-C cables.

Featured image by Pete

Lauren Mobertz

By Lauren Mobertz

Lauren is the former managing editor for DashBurst. One part geek, one part urban nomad, she is constantly scouting for the latest tech and world news. In the evenings you'll find Lauren running in strange places or attempting to dance salsa.