USB Type-C is the future. But why aren’t we using it yet?

Adeshola 🎧
Sep 2, 2017 · 4 min read

If you don’t know or haven’t heard of USB Type-C, nobody is going to throw a rock at you. Even though it’s not exactly new, it’s only till of recent that OEMs (Original Equipment Manufacturers) started seeing its potential and are making the switch.

Image Credit: Android Authority

What is this USB Type-C thing though? I’m glad you asked. According to Wikipedia, it’s this:

USB Type-C, commonly known as simply USB-C, is a 24-pin USB connector system allowing transport of data and power. It is distinguished by its horizontally symmetrical “reversible” connector.

In English, it’s basically a more improved version of the regular micro-USB used in our devices like smartphones and tablets. It has also been dubbed “future proof” meaning that it will become a standard “thing” in future devices. Infact Apple shocked the world when they released their new MacBook with only a USB Type-C port. I kid you not when I say the thing only has a USB-C for everything you want to connect. And oh, an headphone jack on one side.

Image Credit: CNET

This brave/radical move by Apple was to make people adopt a wireless lifestyle and I’ll leave you to judge if that’s working out. However, it’s something that’s becoming present in our smartphones and for good reasons. The first phone to make use of the USB-C was LeEco’s Le1. Soon after, bigger companies started following suit. You have the Samsung Note 7, OnePlus 2, Nexus 6P, Lumia 950/950XL and the list goes on. Newer flagship phones like the Samsung S8, HTC U11, LG G6 were equipped with USB-C so it’s future is very bright.

So, about those good reasons. The USB-C wants to make data transfer and charging faster and more efficient. The USB-C is reversible meaning it doesn’t matter which side you plug into the phone. It has high transfer speeds compared to traditional USB ports. Also, its flexibility allows you connect to devices that use non-USB technologies, like VGA, DisplayPort and Ethernet.

So why aren’t we using it here? Well, don’t look at me. I’m a bit surprised our top brands here haven’t started making use of it. By top brands I mean Tecno, Infinix and co. The reasons aren’t far fetched though. Here are two reasons:

  • They believe we not ready: This is more of a universal reason in our case. I mean let’s be honest, not everyone will find this article particularly useful. We are all satisfied with our regular micro-USB phones. I mean I use the Tecno Camon CX and I’m pretty OK with it. Since who aren’t ready, why make the switch? Bigger OEMs like Samsung and LG are already convincing people to use USB-C with their new phones and as soon as alot of see the need, our beloved brands here will most likely follow suit. For now they are like “Lets give the people what they want. Lets not force them to use new innovations.” Even though some changes in history came through force.
  • USB Type-C has the potential to kill the headphone jack: For those who know about the USB-C, getting a phone with one might also mean you have to let go of the headphone jack — something we can’t live without in this part of the world. Take the Moto Z for example. A thin modular smartphone with no headphone jack but with USB-C. The headphone was eschewed to make the phone thinner but comes with a USB-C adapter in the box. Fortunately, it is not compulsory to dump the headphone jack for a Type-C port. The Samsung S8 clearly shows that.
Image Credit: Android Central

How soon USB Type-C will become a norm in our phones still remains a mystery but change is inevitable and this is one change that we will appreciate. If you are eager to use the USB-C though, you can go ahead and buy flagship phones from bigger brands. As for the rest of us, we’ll just be sipping tea here, waiting for the innovation to reach our side.


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