Initially just an interface for data and peripheral devices, USB technologies have rapidly evolved to support audio, video, data, and fast charging. The latest evolution in USB connectors is USB Type-C, also known as USB-C, which streamlines AV system connections while providing increased speed, functionality, and convenience. USB-C is gaining support from major device manufacturers for use in mobile phones, tablets, and laptops. In some cases, USB-C is the only output offered. However, many devices still do not support this standard, necessitating the use of adapters to incorporate USB-C devices into traditional AV systems. To meet this need, Extron has introduced a new line of adapters and cables that support USB-C.

One Connector with Many Possibilites

As a single-cable solution for the simultaneous delivery of audio, video, data, and power for any platform or device, USB-C offers significant advantages for professional AV environments:

Alternate Modes for Alternate Signal Support

USB-C also accommodates a variety of interface specifications through Alternate modes. Alternate modes allow for the integration of DisplayPort, HDMI, MHL, audio, and Thunderbolt devices through USB-C connectors.

SuperSpeed

The USB-C connector supports the latest USB 3.1 specification. USB 3.1 provides data transfer speeds up to 10Gbps, 20x times faster than the USB 2.0 standard. The increased bandwidth allows USB to deliver video, audio, data, and power over a single cable.

Faster Charging, Larger Devices

USB-C also supports fast charging, delivering up to 100 watts to power most devices, including tablets, desktops, and workstations. Slim enough for phones and robust enough for larger devices, it is the only cable needed to charge almost any device.

Convenience

USB-C also offers the convenience of a reversible connector orientation enabling users to plug their devices in the first time, every time.

Opportunities to Learn More

As with any new technology, the introduction of USB-C presents both opportunities and challenges. Devices with USB-C connectivity vary in their capabilities, supporting a broad range of speed, power, and video standards. As new products with USB-C connectivity enter the market, familiarity with the technology becomes critical, particularly when integrating new devices into existing or legacy systems. Extron’s School of Emerging Technologies 4K provides comprehensive training that empowers integrators to master 4K AV technologies including the incorporation of USB-C into professional AV environments. See www.extron.com/training for more information.

USB White Paper

For a more in-depth review of USB and its use in professional AV environments, Extron has created an informative white paper entitled, "Understanding USB in Professional AV Environments."

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