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USB INFO FAQ

1.What is USB?

USB (Universal Serial Bus) is a interface technology, consisting of a serial bus, that connects and transfers data between a host computer and peripheral devices. According to an issue of 1394 Newsletter published by the Information Gatekeepers Inc, USB was originally designed to integrate computers and telephones, USB operates under a master/slave scheme to communicate between the host and the peripheral.1 Utilizing a true plug-and-play concept, the technology provides easy connection and configuration of peripheral devices without opening the computer. Depending on the device's data requirements, USB has low speed to super speed capabilities. Since its inception, USB has had four major consumer versions: USB 1.0, USB 1.1, USB 2.0 and now USB 3.0


2.What is USB 3.0?

USB 3.0 is the third major version of the Universal Serial Bus (USB) standard for interfacing computers and electronic devices. Among other improvements, USB 3.0 adds the new transfer mode SuperSpeed (SS) that can transfer data at up to 5 Gbit/s (625 MB/s), which is about ten times faster than the USB 2.0 standard. USB 3.0 connectors are usually distinguished from their USB 2.0 counterparts by blue color-coding of the receptacles and plugs, and the initials SS.


3.What are the different types of USB plugs and ports?

The different types of USB ports are highlighted below.


Hi-Speed USB (USB 2.0)

USB 2.0 Standard-A plug and receptacle. A Standard-A USB plug inserts into a USB host or a hub and carries both power and data.

USB 2.0 Standard-B plug and receptacle. A Standard-B plug typically plugs into a large device, such as a printer.

Micro-USB 2.0 (Micro-A, Micro-B and Micro-AB) plug and receptacle. Micro-USB connectors carry both power and data, and support USB On-The-Go. They are used in small portable devices, such as smartphones, digital cameras, GPS devices and more.


SuperSpeed USB (USB 3.0)

SuperSpeed USB cables and connectors contain 5 additional wires compared to USB 2.0. If you have a SuperSpeed USB plug and a Hi Speed USB receptacle, the device will work, at Hi-Speed USB rates. If you have a Hi Speed USB receptacle and a SuperSpeed USB plug, the device will work, at Hi-Speed USB rates. In order to achieve the data throughput of SuperSpeed USB, a user must have a SuperSpeed USB host, a SuperSpeed USB device and a SuperSpeed USB cable.

USB 3.0 Standard-A plug and receptacle. A Standard-A USB plug inserts into a USB host, or a hub, and carries both power and data. The USB 3.0 Standard-A plug and receptacle are backward compatible with the USB 2.0 Standard-A plug and receptacle.

USB 3.0 Standard-B plug and receptacle. A Standard-B plug typically plugs into a large device, such as a printer. The USB 3.0 Standard-B receptacle is backward compatible with the USB 2.0 Standard-B plug.

Micro-USB 3.0 (Micro-B) plug and receptacle. A Micro-USB 3.0 plug is for small, portable devices, such as smartphones, digital cameras, GPS devices and more. The Micro-USB 3.0 receptacle is backward compatible with the  Micro-USB 2.0 plug.