A few years ago, only the most high-end computers and only a handful of smartphones utilized USB Type-C. But in the year of 2017, virtually every laptop and flagship smartphone emerging from the market comes equipped with these high-speed ports for quick charging and data transfer. To be able to come home and use a single cable for charging your phone and your laptop is such as satisfying feeling.
As I write this post, I use a Samsung Chromebook Plus while my Google Pixel sits beside me, and in my bag is a single USB-C charger. It works for both devices, despite the differing manufacturers and power consumption. I don’t have to worry about carrying a bulky power supply unit around with me for the laptop, nor do I have to make sure I’ve brought a Micro USB cord and not my wife’s Lighting cable. Nope—just peace of mind and comfort knowing I’ve taken the right charger with me.
This is what the future should be.
We are finally seeing an era of technology where OEMs are starting to play nicely with each other instead of forcing their consumers to purchase proprietary accessories.
When you can’t decide whether to get the LG G6 or the new Samsung Galaxy S8 because they’re both beautiful and both offer amazing functionality, choosing which extra charging cables to get is (and should be) the last thing on your mind. You want your decision to be based on aesthetics, price, functionality, and usability. OEMs are finally starting to recognize that USB-C brings with it a no-brainer mentality and many benefits, moving onto our third category.
Side Note: It’s also worth noting that some chargers won’t charge certain electronics because the device will not recognize or permit third-parties for precaution to protect the battery. This is fine because it’s recommended that you use the charger that came with the device, as that usually works best, anyway.
The benefits of USB-C are not only fast and powerful charging but also high-speed data transfer and hardware interoperability. I have a relatively high-end gaming PC, and the motherboard came with a single USB-C port on the back. I wasn’t sure how I was going to make use of it at first, but after purchasing an adapter (dongle), I can use an ethernet cable, my mouse, keyboard, and external speakers all at the same time while leaving the other USB-A ports open for hard drives and flash drives. It’s unprecedented!
If I wanted to use an HDMI cable to mirror my phone screen to a monitor, I could simply connect the adapter to my phone and voila! The screen is cast. At somewhere between 20 Gbps and 40 Gbps, large file transfers don’t take ages anymore. They happen almost instantaneously. If I were to transfer 60 GB of music from my phone to my computer, I could simply plug in a USB-C cable and watch the transfer breeze through.
Finally, we arrive at arguably the best feature of USB-C in my opinion. The most notable phones released in the past few months all adopted USB-C. So did virtually many laptops, such as the most recent MacBook Pro. Samsung, LG, Google, Apple, HTC, Huawei, Xiaomi, Sony, Motorola, OnePlus, Nokia, and so much more—they understand it, they get the benefits.
At some point in the near future, hopefully, most, if not all of your connected devices will run on only one type of connection: USB-C. You should be able to grab a cord and it should work, no matter what you want it to be used for. Whether you want to charge a smartwatch, laptop, phone, tablet, or otherwise, USB-C should be that standard. Heck, even Google’s new WiFi routers use USB-C!
The reality is that we still need cables in our lives. Wireless charging has come a long way, but we don’t all have ten hours to sit and watch our laptops charge with a little pad underneath them. That’d be ridiculous. We also certainly don’t need ten or twelve of cables anymore; we should be able to make do with one or two and still be productive in the progress. USB-C has simplified my life. Hopefully, the future allows the same.