The USB-C connector is immediately recognizable, because unlike the older USB-A, it has an oval shape — a rectangle with its corners smoothed into a curve. It’s completely symmetrical, so it’s impossible to insert incorrectly.
In addition, USB-C is narrow enough that it can fit on phones with no problem. This means that it can be a standard connector for both computers and phones, as well as other devices like game consoles.
Some popular devices that use USB-C cables are the Nintendo Switch, MacBook Pro, and Samsung Galaxy line of phones.
USB-C connectors are the fastest around — with the right setup
USB-C connectors can be used to transfer data, power, and even video and audio.
However, how fast it works depends on what you’re connecting it to.
Different devices have different types of USB ports. These are generally split into three types: USB 3.1, USB 3.2, and Thunderbolt 3 (the latter mainly found on Apple computers). You can see what type you have by checking your device’s manual, or contacting the manufacturer.
By default, a USB-C cable plugged into a USB 3.1 port can transfer 10 gigabytes of data per second. Plugging into a 3.2 port will get you 20 gigabytes per second. And Thunderbolt 3 ports allow USB-C cables to carry a substantial 40 gigabytes per second.
This is much faster than any other sort of USB connector.
USB-C cables are also used to transfer power — they’re commonly used to charge portable devices, smartphones, laptops, and even security cameras.
A standard USB-C connector can provide 2.5 watts of power, which is the same as most USB-A connectors. But many devices use something called a Power Delivery (PD) protocol, which will let a USB-C cable deliver up to 100 watts.
PD cables can charge laptops and other high-wattage devices, something impossible for the older USB standards.
In short: USB-C cables far outpace other types of USB cables. As time goes on, more and more devices will start using USB-C.