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It is time to say goodbye to Micro USB!

Demo board of ST's lithium battery charger solution

USB Type-C + Power delivery 3.0 will unify charging for 3C and mobile devices

Since Apple began using Type-C for the MacBook, major manufacturers have been adopting USB Type-C for their own products. Type-C is also beginning to be used in Android phones, the smartphones with the highest market share. And there are rumors that the iPhone may be switching to Type-C in 2019. All in all, there’s a good chance that Type-C will become a universal interface for iOS, Android, and PC.

Type-C’s greatest advantage is its integration capability. In addition to not having a right or wrong side (a perennial problem for Micro USB users), Type-C is able to offer integrated power delivery (PD) during charging.

USB Type-C + Power delivery 3.0  ((Image source / Amazon))

Existing Type-C devices that do not support PD will not have a competitive edge over other similar products. The market is unlikely to adopt a single interface unless it offers PD support, which brings us to the main point of this article.

Compared with past USB battery charging (BC) capabilities, current technologies support higher voltage and backward compatibility. The latest version of USB PD, version 3.0, features the newly added programmable power supply (PPS) function which offers compatibility with the fast charging protocols of different manufacturers, supporting up to QC 4.0.USB Type-C + Power delivery 3.0 (Image source / USB-IF)

The market trend in USB PD applications

Consumers typically use and carry at least two electronic devices, each with its own charger. These include smartphones, tablet PCs, power banks, and laptops. A charging device that uses PD technology can deliver power from a single electronic device to charge or replenish other devices using a switch that supports PD technology.

USB Type-C + Power delivery 3.0

The latest PD 3.0 technology also resolves the problem of incompatibility with the PD 2.0 fast charging standards, an obstacle that hindered the integration of products from different manufacturers. PD 3.0 supports both low and high voltages, with the current remaining largely the same. This PD version is therefore compatible with two fast charging technologies at the same time, combining the high-voltage low-current features of Qualcomm QC with the low-voltage high-current features of VOOC.

USB Type-C + Power delivery 3.0

This key change allows almost every mainstream fast charging standard in the market to be integrated through PPS, further improving the chances of Type-C becoming the only interface in the charging market. 2019 looks set to be the year when the battle between fast charging standards finally comes to an end. At long last, consumers can look forward to the convenience of using a common charger for all their devices.

As a world-leading technology distribution company, Avnet is bringing together major chip suppliers, solution providers, smart hardware companies, cloud service platforms and end customers, We are further integrating resources to create a complete ecosystem for the quick charge market. The Avnet Design Services Department has also developed a variety of PD designs as references for customers engaging in circuit design, while also assisting them to accelerate their products’ market launch.



Wilson Hou,
Staff Design Engineer of Avnet Design Services,
Asia Pacific


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