These reversible Micro USB cables eliminate frustration

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I could guess at a few reasons but I’d only be guessing

  • standard compliance - if manufacturers built them reversibly, whatever standards body “owns” USB wouldn’t allow them to call them “USB Cables”
  • strength - removing a bunch of material from the USB A plug makes it more likely to break after only a short service life.

I bought these a while ago and love them. I’ve also bought Apple Lightning cables with the same reversible USB A connectors. The reversible connectors are probably not as strong as the standard connectors but so far, I haven’t had any problems.

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Also requires 2x the connection points to achieve rotational symmetry (where regular USB micro connections have 5 contacts this scheme would need more to avoid reversing the streams).

Here’s the pinout for the 24 connections in USB C connector that was designed around this rotationally agnostic strategy :

In this case though - through the clever use of differential signaling the high speed data pairs (blue connections) are not redundant (because the system is designed to be flexible as to where those wind up on the other end) - the power/ground connections similarly are advantaged by redundancy copper for current reasons. The only extraneous connections are the vestigial legacy USB2.0 connections on the mauve blocks in the middle.


Why aren’t all USB cables made this way?

Let’s go to the wayback machine:
Boing Boing: USB inventor admits that the plugs are annoying

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I bought some of these a while ago, but would not do so again. They worked great at first, but over time the connections became very loose and I had to careful since the weight of the cable would just pull them out. I think even regular micro USB cables fit more loosely in the ports I’ve used these reversible cables in. Your mileage may vary.

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I bought some after a previous bb post. Agree that the main issue is that they pull out easily. Unfortunately this means that the main use case, plugging things while in a car, is also the case where the bumpiness tends to pull them out. Also a problem indoors if you want to use the device while plugged in. I have not had any damage to ports.

“Mauve” sounds worse than mois-t , yet the filters don’t catch that one. Mauve… uggg…

That is exactly my experience, too. And for some devices, they just never worked in the first place. Super annoying when you’re out and about and this is the only fucken cable for miles.

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