Posted in Interesting, Open Source, Programming, Softwares

USB : Universal Serial Bus

One colleague at workplace had bought a brand new phone and forgotten his Type C charger at home and was asking for people around. If he was provided with one, he constantly checked the pin end to confirm the Type C. So, this is the latest USB in and around with the mobile devices we get to see. So, lets understand the USB and its evolution.

What was used before USB?

In the pre-USB era, communication between devices was done using communications ports namely parallel ports, serial ports, gaming ports etc.

What is a USB?

The USB stands for Universal Serial Bus is a standard connector used to connect peripherals to computer. Its is the most commonly used port and as the name says its quiet Universal. Its used to connect devices such as mice, cameras, printers, scanners, external hard drives, flash drives and even can do networking and also its used to charge devices such as mobile phones.

The 1st USB version was released in 1996 with release of USB 1.0. The versions are based on the speed of data transfer were

  • USB 1.0 which had a speed of 1.5 Megabits/sec.
  • USB 1.1 with a speed of 12 Megabits/sec,
  • USB 2.0 with a speed of 480 Megabits/sec
  • USB 3.0 with a speed of 5 Gigabits/sec
  • USB 3.1 with a speed of 10 Gigabits/sec
  • USB 3.2 with a speed of 20 Gigabits/sec
  • USB 4.0 with a speed of 40 Gigabits/sec
Image credits: newnex.com

In addition to different speeds of USB there were different types of USB cables, connectors and ports it uses.

A typical USB cable has two ends with two different connectors, Type A at one end and Type B or Type C at the other end of the cable. Type A connector is the host connector. This can be plugged into computers Type A USB port

USB comes in various shapes and sizes: Standard, Mini, Micro. Each of these have types which are developed with the USB standards defined above.

  • Type A : is the original design for the USB standard with a flat and rectangular shape. Mostly used in host devices, including desktop computers, laptops, game, media players and so on.
  • Type B : plugs into peripheral device such as a printer, a phone, or an external hard drive. 
  • Type C : is a USB with a rectangular shape with rounded corners. It supports USB 3.1 with the top speed of 10Gbps and has much higher power output of up to 20V and 5A.

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