MODS: Infinite USB Plug Redesign

I was doing a research and comparison of backlit keyboards when I stumbled across this USB design whose concept is quite unique. The designer, Gonglue Jiang, calls it "Infinite USB" (source: Yanko Design).

One of the limitations on notebooks is the lack of USB ports in proportion to the number of devices we would like to hook up. An easy remedy these days is the USB Hub, but YD won’t be YD if we showcased run-of-the-mill solutions! So here’s the Infinite USB -- an alternative plug on devices that kinda acts like a tag team. The design speaks for itself, so no point elaborating, however what we can do is talk about its effectiveness and limitations. For starters I don’t think we may be able to tag too many devices one behind the other. I reckon max 3 or 4 before the tag starts to look awkward, but the color coding on plugs will make it easy to identify which plug belongs to which device.

The concept is made more profound by pictures of the design itself.

Infinite USB Plug Redesign

While the idea is exceptional it has its own limitations. For one, the USB port taps out at around 500mA (maybe higher for USB 3.0) only. So the number of devices will be limited by this specification. That will be to the detriment of the "infinite" moniker.

This makes more sense in plugging quasi-permanent USB devices like mice and keyboards, not removable ones. Imagine chaining just two USB flash drives. In order to unplug the second link on the chain, the first one has to be unplugged first.

The concept is quite good and innovative. It will definitely have its uses. As it seems the manufacturing sector has not caught up on the design as I have yet to see this on USB devices. While it may be out there, it is not being mass produced.

Infinite USB has its limitations and the infinite on the name definitely got my attention and admiration (and criticism).

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