Best USB Type-C Accessories and Cables
USB Type-C will soon be the new standard connector for both charging and data. Last year, Type-C appeared as a port on a handful of systems, including the Apple MacBook and Google's new Chromebook Pixel. But, in 2016, we should see a lot of phones and laptops that use the port. With Type-C onboard, you can copy files at USB 3.1 speeds, deliver enough power to charge a laptop or use Alt Mode to send other types of data using DisplayPort or Thunderbolt 3 connections.
Below you’ll find a list of USB Type-C accessories that will help you continue to use your older USB-A peripherals, charge your devices, provide extra ports and take advantage of USB Type-C’s ability to output 4K video. It’s everything you’ll need to make the most out of the new connector as you find it on more and more devices.
Monoprice USB-C to USB-A Cable
You probably have a lot of accessories that rely on good, old-fashioned USB Type-A, and it will be some time before you manage to replace them all. Until that time, this 3-foot, USB Type-C to USB-A cable will keep your gadgets, old and new, connected to one another.
Monoprice USB-C to USB-C Cable
Budget favorite Monoprice has a wide variety of USB Type-C cables ready to go — and at slightly more palatable prices than some of the other early competition. At the moment, this 3-foot, USB-C to USB-C cable will come in handy mainly for charging. But this is a full USB 3.1 Type-C cable, so as additional accessories (e.g., external hard drives, battery packs) with USB Type-C become available, this cable will be useful.
SanDisk Flash Drive
One of the only USB-C accessories currently available that isn't a cable or an adapter, this 32GB SanDisk Flash Drive has a USB 3.0 Type-A connector on one side and a USB Type-C connector on the other, so you will see blazing speeds on both ends of the transfer.
Apple USB-C Power Adapter
No doubt your USB Type-C device came with a charger. But extras never hurt, and the 29W Apple USB Type-C Power Adapter is a compact and sleek-looking choice. Just remember that you need to bring your own USB Type-C to USB Type-C charging cable.
Dell USB Type-C to HDMI/Ethernet/VGA/USB 3.0 Adapter
This USB Type-C adapter from Dell can do the work of several adapters by allowing you to plug into displays, attach older USB accessories and connect to wired Internet with one compact adapter that’s easy to take with you anywhere. It’s the Swiss Army Knife of USB Type-C attachments.
Nomad USB Type-C Car Charger
The USB Type-C car charger by Nomad includes USB-A and USB Type-C ports to charge your devices as you drive. It also doubles as a 3,000-mAH external battery to keep your battery charged wherever the journey ends up taking you.
Anker PowerCore+ 20100 USB Type-C Power Bank
Laptops, tablets and smartphones keep getting thinner, and most don’t have replaceable batteries. Certain USB Type-C ports, like the ones on the 12-inch MacBook and Google’s Pixel C, support charging, so Anker has introduced a high-capacity external battery that will keep your battery full on the go. This battery also features two USB-A ports to feed hungry tablets, headphones and other rechargeable gadgets.
Satechi Type-C USB 3-in-1 Combo Hub
Apple’s 12-inch MacBook has one measly USB Type-C port, but this hub can make it much more useful. It boasts another USB Type-C port, three USB Type-A 3.1 ports, an SD card slot and a microSD card slot. You’ll be able to transfer data, back up hard drives, charge your gear and more, all through the built-in USB Type-C port on your Mac or PC.
New and Notable: Lenovo ThinkVision X1 Monitor
USB Type-C can output video at 4K, so it’s the perfect time to look at premium monitors. Lenovo’s ThinkVision X1 is a 27-inch, 4K display that has a 1080p webcam, inputs for HDMI and DisplayPort, and four USB ports. Most importantly, the superslim X1 can both charge your laptop and receive video from it over a single Type-C connection. It is scheduled to ship in March.
New and Notable: Griffin Breaksafe USB Type-C Power Cable
USB Type-C might have you missing your MagSafe cable, but that will change this April. This upcoming cable from Griffin supports power, not data or video. But most important, your laptop won’t go flying if you trip over a power cord.
New and Notable: Plugable Docking Station
When USB Type-C comes to your office, you’re going to need a dock to manage your monitors, peripherals and other devices that you use to work with your computer. Plugable’s docking station will provide all of the connectivity you need right on your desk, including a 60-watt power adapter, Gigabit Ethernet, four Type-A USB 3.0 ports, a USB 3.1 Type-C port and support for up to three displays through HDMI, DVI or USB Type-C. There’s no word on pricing yet, but it should be available in Q1 of 2016.