Does the Redmond firm have a problem with USB Type-C ? The question arises and was asked of the company after the presentation in early May of its new Surface Laptop. Besides the fact that the terminal is only offered under Windows 10S (Windows 10 version restricted in many respects), the laptop had the “particularity” of not having a USB Type-C input, unlike its competitors from Apple. in particular, which seems to no longer swear by this new standard.
Microsoft's response to this absence was relatively clear: USB Type-C is not yet reliable enough, and must prove itself before it can hope to be integrated back into one of their terminals.
It must be said that USB Type-C – also known as USB 3.1 in some circles – does not only have advantages. Once you get past the practical side of this new standard (a single cable to connect all your peripherals; and no longer need to have to look for which direction to connect your USB cable …), it is clear that certain reliability problems come online account.
Microsoft and USB Type-C, a love story that has yet to begin …
Interviewed by The Verge , Pete Kyriacou (Occupying the position of General Manager of Surface Engineering at Microsoft), had the opportunity to give his point of view on the standard and to explain why it was not integrated into the final version of the Surface Laptop.
He says: “ USB-C is great, but it's also a hell of a problem for a lot of people ”, specifying that it is the second half of this sentence that motivated the decision-making of his teams in this matter. . “ It's not like we don't know USB-C, but for Microsoft the Surface Connect port is a better solution for charging (…)”.
The man explains that the new standard poses a problem in terms of power supply: “ What happens with USB-C is that all the cables are identical and they start to have very variable capacities. from one model to another [in terms of voltage in particular]. And so, even for a connoisseur, confusion sets in ".
Lest the general public – by mistake – come to charge the precious Surface Laptop with poor quality cables, insufficiently reliable at the electrical level, Microsoft has finally decided to leave Type-C aside.
A defensible justification, even if Apple does not seem to have had the same fears on its side. Only time will tell which of the two firms was right on the issue.