The next time you try to pack in a variety of chargers in your hand luggage before heading for the airport, you might realize that there is actually just one to be carried. The same port in your laptop which you use to charge that tablet and power the portable hard drive could now be used to charge the laptop itself, thanks to bidirectional support. The USB 3.0 Promoter Group, in conjunction with the USB 2.0 Promoter Group, announced the completion of the USB Power Delivery specification, which enables increased power delivery through USB cables and connectors. The specification expands cable bus power capabilities in USB applications, supplying higher voltage and current to deliver power up to 100 watts over USB Power Delivery certified cables. It is capable of delivering higher power to charge notebook PCs and power external hard-disk drives, devices which previously did not receive adequate power from traditional 5V bus power.
The USB Power Delivery specification enables a switchable source of power without changing cable direction. Existing USB cables and connectors are also compatible with this specification and will coexist with the USB Battery Charging 1.2 specification as well as existing USB-bus powered applications.
“USB Power Delivery enables a path to greatly reduce electronic waste by eliminating proprietary, platform-specific chargers,” said Brad Saunders, USB 3.0 Promoter Group Chairman. “We envision a significant move toward universal charging based on this specification, most notably for charging notebook PCs using standardized USB power bricks or when connected to USB hubs and desktop displays that integrate USB Power Delivery capabilities.”
To download both the USB Power Delivery specification and adopter agreements, visit http://bit.ly/BDuM7.
Industry Support for Power Delivery
“The publication of the USB Power Delivery specification is an important step in enabling a flexible, standardized power management ecosystem,” said Peter Harrison, Director, Standards Collaboration, Nokia.
“We believe USB Power Delivery is the next big step in the USB evolution to provide high bandwidth data and intelligent power over a simple, single, ubiquitous cable,” said Robert Hollingsworth, Senior Vice President and General Manager of the USB Products Group at SMSC. “USB has always combined data and power over a single cable, and this is widely believed to be a major contributor to the present ubiquity of USB. USB Power Delivery builds on that success and adds full bi-directional power that can be renegotiated as system power needs change with the end-user.”
“As a founding member of the USB 3.0 Promoter Group, Texas Instruments supports the release of the USB Power Delivery specification,” said Steve Tom, product manager for Texas Instruments' USB power products. “Texas Instruments is committed to enabling new applications for USB Power Delivery by offering innovative solutions in this space.”
Implications of USB PD to users
As an SMB, if you are considering to expand and open a new office in the near future, you might want to purchase equipment that is certified for USB Power Delivery. This will affect the number of power supply points that you will need for your new office. You may also want to purchase systems that have the highest number of USB ports.