USB Type and USB Version Released till Date.
USB is the acronym or short form for Universal Serial Bus. USB is used by over 90% of the world population. USB was earlier common among only computer user, today; every smartphone released has USB and wall connector as their power charger. USB has an industry standard defines the cables, connectors and communications protocols used in a bus for connection, communication, and power supply between computers and electronic devices. Over the years, various USB type and USB version have been released.
Definition of USB Type and USB Version.
Functionality and speed defines USB Version while the manner in which a USB’s ports and plugs are wired as well as its physical shape defines USB Type.
Currently, we have four different USB Types: We have
- USB Type-A.
- USB Type-C.
- Proprietary USB.
Also, we have four different USB Versions: We have
- USB 1.1.
- USB 2.0.
- USB 3.0.
- USB 3.1.
Now let’s take it one after the other starting with the USB Types.
USB Version and USB Type Released till Date.
USB Implementers Forum (USB IF) is the organization in charge of approving and releasing new usb types and usb versions.
It can also be refer to as USB Standard-A. The end of a USB cable that goes into a host (Be it a desktop, Laptop, Media players, Game Consoles etc.) is called the Type A connector (Also known as A-male connector).
On the other hand, the port or receptacle where the A-male connector enters on a host is the A-female connector. Type-A port are mostly in host devices, but there are some peripheral devices that uses Type-A port.
All available USB versions have the same USB Type-A design, meaning a Type-A connector will be compatible with a Type-A port even if the device and host use different USB versions. i.e USB 3.0 external hard drive also works with a USB 2.0 port and vice versa.
Note: There are smaller Type-A plugs and connectors, including Mini Type-A and Micro Type-A, but there are very few devices that use these designs.
I know most can now guess what USB Type-B is. USB Type-B is the other end of a standard USB cable also known as Type B-male that enters the peripheral device (Be it a Phone, Printer, an external Hard Drive etc.) while the USB port on the peripheral device the Type B-male enters is called Type B-Female.
Currently, there are five popular design for the USB Type-B’s plugs and connectors because the peripheral devices vary in shapes and size which makes the Type-B connector and its respective port also come in many different designs.
The Original Standard (Standard-B):This was originally designed for USB 1.1 but also used in USB 2.0. It is used for connecting large peripheral devices, such as printers or scanners to a computer.
Mini-USB (or Mini-B USB): This design is very small when compared to Standard-B and are mostly found on older portable devices like digital older portable drives, smartphones, digital cameras etc.
Micro-USB (or Micro-B USB): This design is currently the most popular USB port design found on smartphones and tablets. It is just a little bit smaller than Mini-USB.
Micro-USB 3.0 (or Micro-B USB 3.0): Most of the time, the Type-A end of the cable is blue, it is the widest design and mostly used for USB 3.0 portable drives.
Standard-B USB 3.0: Most of the time, both ends of the cable are blue. This design is very much similar to the Standard-B but designed to handle USB 3.0 speed.
This Type of USB are found on Apple’s iPhones and iPads, they use a proprietary design in the place of the Type-B plug and connector while the Type A design remains the same.
USB Type-C port and connector is the latest connection which was finalized around late August 2014. USB Type-C is a lot more easier to use, faster in transfer rate and charging rate than its predecessor(USB Type-B). USB Type-C port measures 8.4mm by 2.6mm.
EASIER TO USE
With USB Type-C, plugging in to peripheral devices is easy because both connection end are the same which encourage reversible plug orientation and there will be no upside-down or expansion of the peripheral port due to multiple wrong connection.
RATE OF TRANSFER OF DATA AND POWER
The rate of transfer of data has seen a double improvement with 3.1 version of USB Type-C offering a transfer rate of 10Gbps compare to 5Gbps of 3.0 version of USB Type-B.
Also, it offers 20 volts and 5 amps of power as oppose to its predecessor’s 5 volts and 1.8 amps. To sum this up, not only that transfer of data will be hell faster, but charging of batteries will also take lesser time than it use to be.
BI-DIRECTIONAL POWER TRANSFER
Latest USB Type-C allows bi-directional power, so apart from charging the peripheral device, when applicable, a peripheral device could also charge a host device. All this means you can do away with an array of proprietary power adapters and USB cables, and move to a single robust and tiny solution that works for all devices.
Note: Type-C USB and USB 3.1 are backward-compatible with USB 3.0 and USB 2.0. In a pure Type-C USB connection, the Type-A ports and plugs are no longer included. However, for compatibility, you’ll find compatible Type A to Type C cable. On top of that there will be adapters to make Type C hosts and devices work with existing USB devices.
USB 1.1: This version is the first widely accepted USB version, it was released in August 1998 and has a top speed of 12Mbps (though in many cases only performs at 1.2Mbps).
USB 2.0: This version has a max speed of 480Mbps in Hi-Speed mode, or 12Mbps in Full-Speed mode. It has a max power output of 2.5V, 1.8A and was released in April 2000. It is also backward-compatible with USB 1.1.
USB 3.0: This version was released in November 2008, features a top speed of 5Gbps in Super Speed mode. USB 3.0 port and connector is usually colored blue, it (USB 3.0) is backward-compatible with USB 2.0 but its port can deliver up to 5V, 1.8A of power.
USB 3.1: This is the latest USB version, it was released in July 2013 and doubles the speed of USB 3.0 to 10Gbps (now called Super Speed+ or Super Speed USB 10 Gbps). USB 3.1 is backward-compatible with USB 3.0 and USB 2.0. It features has three power profiles and allows larger devices to draw power from a host: up to 2A at 5V (for a power consumption of up to 10W), and optionally up to 5A at either 12V (60W) or 20V (100W).
Note: The only different between the connectors and ports of USB versions is the numbers of pins they have, but they are arrange in a way that doesn’t prevent them from been compatible with the older version. To be specific, USB 3.0’s connector and ports have more pins than those of USB 2.0 versions to deliver faster speed and higher power output.
There you have it on USB version and USB type. Share this tutorial to educate more people on USB (Universal Serial Bus).