How do USB cables work?
A USB cable typically has four different wires that correspond to different colours. The green and white wires carry data, while the black and red wires power the cable. More specifically, the red wire acts as the positive wire and carries five volts, while the black one is the negative wire – also known as the ground wire.
Types of USB cables
Each USB cable is designed with its own specific purpose and device compatibility. If you are looking to select the right cable for your business needs, the first thing to do is to understand the different types of cables available out there. Below are a few commonly used USB connection types.
USB A (type A)
This is the most common USB cable, and it has a rectangular shape. It is roughly 1.4 cm (9/16 in) in length and 0.65 cm (1/4 in) in height. These USB extension cables are typically used for connecting devices such as laptops, computers, keyboards, power adapters, mouses, and more, and it is great for setting up an office. USB sticks often feature USB A connectors as well. Type A ports and cables are compatible with all USB versions, from USB 1.0 to the latest standard.
USB B (type B)
This type of USB cable is less common than type A cables. Type B cables are instead almost square and are mainly used to connect scanners, printers, routers, game consoles, and other periphery devices to computers. Type B cables and ports support nearly all versions of USBs, from USB 1.1 to USB 3.1. That said, type B cables are becoming less common as the size of electronic devices is shrinking.