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USB-C For everything

  • 08-06-2022 5:58pm

    now that the EU has confirmed the USB-C port to be the standard charging port for all electronic devices, is there a chance that this could, as critics claim, stifle innovation?

    what happens when USB-C is no longer the best option? Most, if not all devices that used to use Micro USB now seem to be upgrading to USB-C which is better. But what happens when that is obsolete, do we then stop Samsung or Apple bringing out the next best thing, because the european parliament needs to vote on it?

    I use solely apple products, apart from a Dell laptop and the type of cable really doesn't bother me in the slightest, so is this bureaucracy gone mad, or a step in the right direction for the consumer and the planet?



  • Registered Users Posts: 27,064 ✭✭✭✭ HeidiHeidi

    I thought this had been decided years ago. Couldn't understand why Apple persisted in being different.

  • Registered Users Posts: 72,105 ✭✭✭✭ Overheal

    When that happens they'd just update the rule to apply to whatever the superior standard is (likely to be USB 4) using a similar process to the implementation of this rule.

    It's not that mad: USB-C and Lightning are the 2 cable types still in circulation. Originally there were more types of charger than there were brands. That's a lot of doubling of eWaste to achieve the same job. Apple doesn't even include cables in the box anymore in the US at least. Lightning is only used by iOS products and the only reason they get away with that is their otherwise market position. They already include USB-C in many of their devices being sold now, and lightning doesn't offer anything AFAIK that USB-C cannot do and thensome, it is the obsolete choice... most lightning and apple wireless charging cables today now require a USB-C interface to be energized anyway! The USB-C has more pins too, significantly more, the lightning only uses 8 pins. USB-C supports 24, and is only about 1 millimeter wider, while still being bi-directional insert.

    Where this might get prickly is with the rule for laptop chargers. USB-C can deliver that much power, but Apple's magsafe design for this plug is novel and innovative. The simple answer would be, a USB-C magsafe dongle, that can still be removed to reveal a USB charging port.

    I thought this had been decided years ago. Couldn't understand why Apple persisted in being different.

    Money. The revenue they get from licencing on accessories is staggering.

  • At some point, I presume we will move on to USB-x though and that will mean two different ports once again, I mean no one will change their camera, phone, power bank and games console all at the same time, so there will be an overlap as there is now with micro USB and USB-C.

    is this just about the environment, is is it also about teaching Apple who is boss?

  • Registered Users Posts: 11,086 ✭✭✭✭ TheValeyard

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  • Registered Users Posts: 11,215 ✭✭✭✭ Suckit

    Previously it was a recommendation, but Apple mainly, didn't want to follow it (£$€ as mentioned above), so now it is no longer a recommendation.

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,899 ✭✭✭ BailMeOut

    The apple cable always seemed like it broke normal conventions as the power connectors are exposed. I guess it didn't otherwise it would not have been allowed but if you look at any other electrical connector (regardless of how much power they carry) the power bit is always covered.

  • Posts: 0 Jayce Fit Teflon

    Still far more manageable. USB is an industry wide standard so that overlap is nothing in contrast to a company going their way for the sake of it. We're in a far better position because of standardization.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,298 ✭✭✭ Bigmac1euro

    I’m glad Apple stuck with the lightening port over micro usb which was the absolute worst type usb ever.

    Now it’s time for everyone to move to usb-c I agree.

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,189 ✭✭✭ Brucie Bonus

    About damn time.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 72,105 ✭✭✭✭ Overheal

    I agree, at the time it released Lightning was ahead of its peergroup. That's no longer the case, and apple uses both lightning and USB-C concurrently. This was the right time to implement such a rule

    The rule would probably include a sunset date for the old standard cable and introduce the new cable as standard. It's about a lot of things, but Apple is hanging on to an inferior cable standard because of the licensing it controls on its design, which (used to be) governed by its use of micro authentication chips embedded in the cable's plug (Which has been worked around iirc). Both obsolete and inefficient. And it's not just the EU, apple has done it to itself: the iPad pro uses USB-C. If you're an Apple customer with multiple devices from them, even from one manufacturer you are dealing with multiple standards of cable, and one of them is far more proprietary than the other.

  • Registered Users Posts: 17,266 ✭✭✭✭ Mr. CooL ICE

    I just think USB-C is feckin brilliant. I have an portable monitor (looks like a tablet) for my work laptop that takes just a USB-C connector, which handles both power and video in the one cable. So, so handy

  • i agree. I have a docking station with a printer, HD monitor and blue tooth adaptors for mouse and keyboard, plus the obvious power cable all hanging off it and all this is managed by a simple USB-C connection into my laptop. very neat and tidy and no chunky big plastic clip in station as there used to be.

  • Registered Users Posts: 4,769 ✭✭✭ Cordell

    now that the EU has confirmed the USB-C port to be the standard charging port for all electronic devices, is there a chance that this could, as critics claim, stifle innovation?

    It will "stifle" innovation i.e. restrict the innovation to within the standard limits. Because, like, this is the purpose of standards :)

    With USB 4 standard a USB-C connector (specs are indeed confusing) can provide up to 240W of power and 40Gbps of data transfer and these are quite generous limits to innovate within. And this is not the end, the connector can stay the same for the next USB standard.

  • Registered Users Posts: 356 ✭✭ Kurooi

    Then EU can switch to another type of cable in 10-30 years if and when USB C is no longer good enough.

    Then we can have dongles and converters during the transition, and they will work just fine because we all have ONE connection they have to work with so we can use the same ones and not keep buying more trash.

    Sounds good!

  • Registered Users Posts: 72,105 ✭✭✭✭ Overheal

    Dongles are a lot less wasteful, and thankfully most of them have high utility and interoperability.

    Every cable is just a dongle between a length of wire. You're cutting out the repeatable infrastructure. 2 meters of wire for dozens of applications instead of dozens of meters of wire for a handful of bespoke applications

  • Registered Users Posts: 8,101 ✭✭✭ riclad

    Before the eu brought in a new law, almost every phone had its own power supply, different voltages, different shape connector standard, this results in landfills full of 1000s of tons of old chargers ,phones last 2 0r 3 years .usb micro lasted for over 10 years, each charger is 5 volt, 1 to 2 amps.usb c is designed to charge phones, tablets, chromebooks, its designed to last for 30 years .

    people on pcs are still using usb a for connecting devices to pcs ,external drives ,printers .usb a was invented about 25 years ago after the ibm pc was a standard platform.this law is designed to reduce electronic waste ,it applys to anyone who wishs to sell phones in europe

    apple will be forced to switch over to usb c ,theres no technical reason usb c cant be used to charge an iphone.

    i we wish to survive on this planet ,we will have to use curb electronic waste and making chargers that can only be used on one phone , a universal charging standard 2amp 5 volts is the logical way to go.usb c will be around at least 30 years .

    its like truck wheels and car wheels are a standard size, every car designer does not have a slightly different sized wheel .this reduces waste and the cost of making car parts.

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,723 ✭✭✭ Ubbquittious

    Standardising USB-C is generally a good thing but not without it's flaws.

    The main problem is the pitch of the connector is very fine. It will wear out quickly and i've had several USB-C charger ports fail on me. Internally the charge port is often on a separate flexible PCB which is specific to that model phone and quite hard to DIY replace the connector. Significantly harder than desoldering from a rigid PCB.

    The old Nokia connector was much more robust and if it failed you could replace it using only a torx screwdriver. Most people don't use the USB cable to transfer data. I think they should have standardised a 2-pole connector instead

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,891 ✭✭✭ Montage of Feck

    Those Sony Ericsson ones were the worst design ever.

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  • Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators Posts: 14,292 Mod ✭✭✭✭ whiterebel

    There are all different sizes and widths of wheel used on cars and trucks?

  • Registered Users Posts: 221 ✭✭ Roxxers

    **** me

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,891 ✭✭✭ Montage of Feck

  • Registered Users Posts: 72,105 ✭✭✭✭ Overheal

    The mating interfaces are all virtually the same or interoperable

  • Registered Users Posts: 12,137 ✭✭✭✭ Varik

    I assume a truck can take normal car one but the ones made for trucks are larger, if you use one it won't go in right and the auto shut off will keep kicking in.

    Had to go in and pay for a euro of diesel that took an age to get, and then come out and fill normally.

  • Registered Users Posts: 8,101 ✭✭✭ riclad

    Most people change their phones every 2 to 3 years, if we have just one standard people will be able to use the USB C charger on any phone they have, if they lose a charger or the charger stops working, I think a 2amp 5volt USB C charger will charge any new phone if this law go, s into force,

    Most new phones now seem to use usb C standard connector apart from iPhones

  • Registered Users Posts: 509 ✭✭✭ Juran

    Skoda removed normal USB ports for USB-C in some of their cars in 2022. I know they are thinking ahead, but I think its way too early. I want to trade in my Kodiaq for a January 2023 model, it means I know have to get a USB to USB-C adaptor for my phone and music USB key. More gagets !

  • Registered Users Posts: 44 Dom the chemist

    I remember back in the 00s, pretty much every mobile phone apart from Nokias had a different charger and it used to be hard to find a charger for a particular phone in the shops if it was a year or two old.

  • Registered Users Posts: 29,984 ✭✭✭✭ Hotblack Desiato

    I heartily endorse this event or product change

    But, obligatory XKCD:

    Defund Alcohol Action Ireland

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  • Registered Users Posts: 8,101 ✭✭✭ riclad

    The point is usb C will charge any phone from any company , it will charge tablets and chromebooks too, company's adapt once a standard is common to all phones. It saves money for company's and users and stops landfills being full of old redundant chargers,