USB 3.0 upgrade boosts power transfer

The upgrade to the USB SuperSpeed 3.0 spec will boost power transfers in both directions from 10 watts to 100 watts allowing computer monitors, laptops and high definition TVs to be powered through the use of a single universal serial bus hub that allows bidirectional flow.

The power transfer will change the way computers and peripheral devices consume and deliver power, according to Jeff Ravencraft, president of the USB Implementers Forum. The USB-IF is a non-profit organization founded companies that include Microsoft, Hewlett-Packard and Intel.

For instances, an HDTV with a USB hub built into it will enable users not only to exchange data and audio/video, but they can charge devices from it as well, said Ravencraft.

USB 3.0 is the second major revision of the USB standard for computer connectivity. First introduced in 2008, USB 3.0 features a transfer mode called SuperSpeed capable of transferring data at up to 4.8 Gbps over 10 times faster than the 480 Mbps top speed of USB 2.0.

The upgraded USB 3.0 SuperSpeed specification bumps that speed further to 10 Gbps.

Ravencraft also said that the new specification has the potential of reducing the amount of electronic waste going to landfills.

For example, the European Union now requires mobile phone vendors to use micro USB connectors for charging. Through consumer pressure a similar movement may force vendors to accept the standardized power and data interface based on USB 3.0.


USB 3.0 devices charge faster, says group

The upgraded USB 3.0 is compatible with existing cables and connectors and enables voltage and currents to pass through the USB power pins. Power can be used and delivered over the same pins without having to change cables.

USB 3.0 can be used for small devices with five volts 2 amps or 10 watts and devices up to 20 volts, 5amps and 100 watts eliminating the need for multiple types of battery chargers.

Cell phone battery chargers account for almost 100,000 tons of trash each year in the United States and 51,000 tons of landfill waste in the E.U.

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