USB Connection Types

Excerpt from: How to be USB Smart

Connection Types

There are many different styles of USB. The 2 sides of USB are classified as either male or female. The male side, or plug, goes into the female side, or jack. A blue port means that the port is compatible USB 3.0 and up. Although some tech companies like Apple make it the standard black for design reasons. 

Type A

USB type A is probably one of the most commonly found forms of USB found on many computers. As of 2016 more and more tech companies are replacing USB-A with USB-C because of it slimmer form and its the same size and Thunderbolt 3. 

Type B

Type B can be found on larger devices like printers, scanners, some optical drives, and audio devices. This form of USB can commonly be found with type B on one side that you plug into your printer for example and on the other side is type A to go into your computer. USB-B 3.0 uses a different style than USB-B 2.0. On a USB-B 3.0 there is another little bar at the top. This bar makes USB Type B 3.0  vr forwards compatible but not backwards compatible.  

Type B Mini

Type B Mini is popular USB choice on cameras due to it’s small and slim design. USB type B mini are commonly found with type B mini on one side and type A on the other to plug into a computer.

Type B Micro

USB type B micro commonly called micro cable is popular among devices like android phones, and other mobile tech like portable chargers and wireless charging pads. USB type B micro are commonly found with type B mini on one side and type A on the other. On a USB-B Micro 3.0 there is another connection. This port makes USB Type B Micro forwards compatible but not backwards compatible


USB-C is made to replace other types of USB. The slim design makes it ideal for small devices like smartphones and portable computers. Unlike any other USB design it works either way you plug it in. There is no longer a side A or B. Intel’s Thunderbolt 3 and USB use the same design which enables one port to work with both standards. Don’t get them confused though because Thunderbolt enabled accessories can’t  always work in USB ports. 

Now these are not all of the USB forms these are only the most popular used by manufacturers. The picture below from shows a good representation of all of the different USB combinations that I have listed above. 


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