THE USB Implementers Forum (USB-IF), an industry group responsible for the rollout of USB-C, has announced plans to stem the tide of dodgy USB-C chargers that have a nasty habit of frying all the things.
The rollout of the new standard, which also includes the higher power bearing but faster USB 3.1, has produced some shonky products, sometimes through ignorance but sometimes through negligence.
This was demonstrated by Google engineer Benson Leung in his one-man crusade which ended in the frying of his £1,000 Google Chrome Pixel.
The USB-IF said in a statement that a new 'Certified USB Charger' logo and compliance programme will ensure that people can freely interchange chargers between products without worrying.
“USB-IF understands consumers want to carry less equipment without sacrificing battery life or flexibility,” said Jeff Ravencraft, USB-IF president and chief operating officer.
“Guided by the USB brand promise of ‘it just works’, the Certified USB Charger Programme will make it easier to share device chargers across the compliant USB Type-C landscape, whether consumers are at home, in the office or anywhere in between.”
Rahman Ismail, USB-IF chief technology officer, added: “The future of consumer tech is mobility and letting technology disappear into the background. Certified USB Chargers will give users an interoperable power source and a seamless experience.
"From displays to smartphones and docking stations, the industry is aligning behind USB Type-C and USB Power Delivery as the last wire you’ll ever need for faster charging.”
The move hasn't come a moment too soon. Google's own Nexus range comes with chargers that aren't compliant, and OnePlus suffered some initial wobbles which have now been fixed.
The problem stems from the fact that USB-C is designed to be a power source, AV and data transfer port all in one, and many manufacturers have cut corners to get to market faster.
Amazon, meanwhile, has had a crackdown on shonky-tonk USB-C chargers and cables, the latter being the main focus of Leung's ire, taking many that didn't pass his capacity test off sale altogether. µ
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