Computex 2016, a technology tradeshow that takes place in Taipei, Taiwan every year, just wrapped up. Computex has been around since 1981, but has gained more attention in the international community in recent years. This year had several high profile exhibitors including Acer, Audi, Samsung, and Mercedes-Benz to name a few. The show is focused around information and communications technology (ICT), with four main themes of focus: IoT applications, business solutions, startups, and gaming.
Although most of the show was focused on “Internet Computing Ecosystems”, many companies showcased new devices that support USB Type-C. The connector that does it all is allowing designers to make their products more compact than ever, and the general public now gets to see the beginning of what a world with more multi-purpose cables looks like. Below are some USB Type-C compatible devices that have been turning heads at the show.
3D Camera for Smartphones
Eye-Plug, a device that allows smartphone cameras to capture 3D images and videos, was recently unveiled at the show. It also allows for images to be refocused, which adds a lot of utility to your phone’s camera for around $40.
Eye-Plug is a depth sensor that works in tandem with a smart phone’s existing camera to give it the ability to capture in 3D. The small device plugs into the USB Type-C port on newer Android devices with USB Type-C compatibility. Unfortunately for iOS users, they will have to wait a few months before a compatible version of the Eye-Plug comes out. Android users won’t have to wait as long, but they’ll still have to wait, as the device will only be available in Taiwan when it launches.
Thanks to USB Type-C’s fast data transfer rate and ability to display video in real time, it can handle the demands of capturing 3D video. The Eye-Plug only has a 2 megapixel camera, but the designers said that was a design choice to make them more affordable. Future models will likely feature better cameras to push the data transition limits of USB Type-C.
The Eye-Plug camera was developed by Weeview, a small 10 person startup in Taiwan. The team attended Computex in search of international distributors for their new camera.
Solid State Hard Drive/ Flash Drive Combos
Although Computex is mainly focused on internet based devices, there were some interesting new takes on old-school offline data transfer. A couple of SATA SSDs made by Avexir and Zadak 511 were shown at Computex that have USB Type-C ports. This allows the user to utilize the card as both a hard drive and a flash drive.
These SSDs may not catch on until more devices become compatible with USB Type-C, but people who work with high quality video editing, 3D animation, and other work that involves large file sizes could benefit greatly from these. It will allow them to transfer those large files easily when they want to work at home without having to open up two computers or waiting on downloads. This will, however, require them to have USB Type-C compatibility on both of their computers. Multi-purpose memory devices like these should become more popular when USB Type-C is more common.
The First HD Monitor with USB Type-C Display Cables
Asus plans on showcasing their Disegno Curve monitors at Computex 2016. They have two models: the MX34VQ, which is 34 inches, and the MX27UC, which is 27. The 34 inch version has an aspect ratio of 21:9 and 3440 x 1440 resolution and the 27 inch version has 4k display. The 34 inch version has not been confirmed to have USB Type-C ports for display, but the 27 inch version does.
The MX27UC (27 inch) has a USB Type-C connector which adds versatility while cutting down on cluttered wires. The monitor also comes with built in speakers, which eliminates yet another cable needed. Details about pricing have not been released yet, but if these monitors are affordable, their functionality and simplicity could make them a big hit.
Join the Conversation
Computex may be over, but there are plenty of shows coming up that will feature more hardware with USB Type-C. What USB Type-C innovations are you looking forward to? Let us know in the comments!