Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 4th Dec 2013 23:40 UTC
In the News

USB cable developers have announced that a forthcoming version of the connector's plug is to be reversible.

It means users of the Universal Serial Bus cables will no longer have to worry which way round the part is facing when plugging it into a device.

The specification is due to be completed by mid-2014, and the first product on the market by 2016.

Spend only a few days using Apple's Lightning connector, and you'll realise how small things like it being reversible just makes life that tiny little bit less frustrating. About time USB did this.

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USB 3.1
by ozonehole on Thu 5th Dec 2013 00:22 UTC
Member since:

Perhaps more significantly, along with the new type-c connector we get USB 3.1, which is said to be twice as fast as USB 3.0. All good news, except that it seems to take forever to get USB technology out on the shelves so we can buy it. USB 3.0 has been around since 2008, yet it's only recently become possible to find external hard drives and memory sticks supporting that standard. New computers are still being manufactured with USB 2.0 ports. If the past is anything to judge by, I don't expect that USB 3.1 will become common until 2018 at the earliest.

Reply Score: 6

RE: USB 3.1
by JAlexoid on Thu 5th Dec 2013 13:26 in reply to "USB 3.1"
JAlexoid Member since:

USB is at least backwards compatible... now look at Thunderbolt. Where is my external GPU!?!?!

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: USB 3.1
by Anachronda on Thu 5th Dec 2013 19:58 in reply to "RE: USB 3.1"
Anachronda Member since:

More importantly, where's my Thunderbolt VMEbus cage?

It's possible to gum together bits and bobs to poke PCIexpress out a cable over to a VMEbus cage. You'd think the industrial folks would be all over Thunderbolt.

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE: USB 3.1
by bassbeast on Fri 6th Dec 2013 02:07 in reply to "USB 3.1"
bassbeast Member since:

Want to know why? As a retailer I can tell you and its the same reason why PC sales are down...what we have is "good enough" for the masses by a LONG shot.

Now if you'll think back USB 1 gave way to 1.1 and 2.0 VERY quickly and the reason for that is that Joe and Jane average were moving files that felt like they took forever on USB 1.0, on USB 2.0? Not so much.

Working with Joe and Jane every day I can tell you that 1.- They move on average less than 3GB at a time, 2.- This tends to be made up of smaller files, pics, docs, etc, and 3.- Their usage of USB drives is pretty much limited to the kinds of things we use the network for like moving files from a laptop to desktop for example.

So for the OEMs there really isn't a point in pushing USB 3 to the masses ATM as its more expensive and the majority not only doesn't ask for it they really see nothing wrong with USB 2.0 in its current form. Files move fast without moving TOO fast (a problem I have seen on some USB 3.0 drives is the "did it move?" question because the box closes too fast for the user to see if it transferred, which can lead to frustration) and its cheap and everywhere. Apple can talk lightning all they want but to Joe and Jane USB 2.0 is plenty fast and they're happy with it.

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE[2]: USB 3.1
by Alfman on Fri 6th Dec 2013 05:57 in reply to "RE: USB 3.1"
Alfman Member since:


I would upvote you if I could.

"As a retailer I can tell you and its the same reason why PC sales are down...what we have is 'good enough' for the masses by a LONG shot."

I think this is very true. Most people don't need to buy a new computer any more because the previous ones are working just fine. Middle end computers are more than enough for typical usage these days. It's not like the old days where a new computer would be the difference between night and day.

The same should happen with tablets, and it won't be because they're no longer useful, it will be because after billions of sales, the market will naturally reach a saturation point. Still, manufacturers can make life difficult for consumers to extend the life of their old devices: non-replacable batteries, restricted bootloaders, introducing deliberate & artificial software incompatibilities, etc.

Reply Parent Score: 2