A sturdy, but bendable USB cable is what most computer and smart device users look for, especially for charging, and transferring of data.The three most commonly used USB cable types are USB-A, USB-B, and USB-C.
USB-A cables are rectangular-shaped plugs that connect to your laptop or PC, while USB-B, are square-shaped and connect to printers, or external hard drive. On the other hand, USB-C cables are smaller plugs that connect to devices such as a phone, mouse or keyboard.
Unlike the traditional USB-A, the type-C USB cable is gaining adoption quickly as it enables high speed data transfer, faster charging of up to 100 watts, and can connect both to your computer, or device.
However, in order to use a device with a USB-C port, you need another device that has a corresponding USB-C port, as it is smaller than the usual USB-A port, so an appropriate cable or adapter will be necessary.
Here are our top picks for the best USB-C 3.1 cables to buy.
What are the best USB-C 3.1 cables?
- Transfers up to 5Gbps of data in under 5 seconds
- Connects to any device or computer
- Full speed charging
- Affordable and durable
- Requires a USB-C port to function
This is a USB-C to USB-C cable boasts over 20 million happy users what with its full speed and safe charging that delivers up to 60W of power.
If you transfer data regularly, then this is your best bet, as it transfers up to 5Gbps of data in under 5 seconds.
It also connects seamlessly to compatible devices such as laptops, phones, or TVs, allowing you to stream from your phone to TV, and enjoy your favorite movie, or music album.
Ordinary USB cables are known to have a short lifespan because they break easily, but this cable guarantees durability owing to its PowerLine feature, which is reinforced with aramid fiber for incredible strength, and a bend lifespan that’s five times higher than other cables.
- Speedy data transfers
- Reversible design
- USB 3.1 Gen 1-compliant
- Cross-platform and cross-device compatibility
- Overall bulky appearance
This cable’s strength resides in its simplicity. Will full support for quick charging and even quicker data transfer/data syncing speeds, the cable will seamlessly work with all USB Type-C 3.1 or 3.0 enabled devices and accessories.
From smartphone to laptop and multi-purpose chargers – you name it, it will handle it.
Another interesting feature is the reversible design that makes usage as easy as a breeze. No more worrying about which side is up, just insert the connector in any Type-C device and start using it.
- 10Gbps data transfer
- 4K video output
- Fast Charging technology
- Supports Thunderbolt 3
- The video function works with DP Alt Mode devices only
This USB 3.1 Gen 2 cable takes it all to the next level and it gives you a bit more of everything.
Speedy data transfers of up to 10Gbps, USB PD Power Delivery for fast charging and even 4K audio and video support.
Thunderbolt 3-compliant, the cable allows you to connect modern devices such as 4K screens and monitors and its compatibility stretches across a wide range of platforms and gadgets from tablets to smartphones, video displays, and portable hard drives.
- 4K video output
- Ultra-fast data transfers
- Thunderbolt 3-compliant
- Universal compatibility
- Does not support Huawei Super Fast Charge
This all-in-one charger has earned its reputation for all the goodd reasons starting with its universal compatibility which makes it work seamlessly with a multitude of devices and platforms including anything from laptops to smartphones and everything in between.
Plug-and-play-ready, this cable supports up to 3840×2160@60HZ 4K video signal, data transfer speeds of up to 10Gbps and ultra-fast USB Power Delivery charging.
To top it all, its nylon-braided construction with 22AGW thick copper wires optimize the current flow and ensure less loss.
- Display Port 4K@60Hz video output
- Wide compatibility
- Rapid charge and data transfers
- High-quality aluminum alloy casing
- PD charger is sold separately
With a large specter of compatibility, this cable is versatile enough to work with all your devices and deliver excellent performance on each and every one of them.
With data transfer speeds 20 times faster than USB 2.0 cables and Quick charge plus PD Fast charge support, the cable goes reaches never before accomplished results that will surely impress you.
Its aluminum alloy casing and lightweight, portable design make it perfect for traveling. When combined with a braided-nylon cord and Shell plated nickel connector, you can only expect the best.
There you go, these are our top recommendations – don’t be shy to reach out for the comments section below and let us know what was your favorite cable from this selection.
FAQ: Learn more about USB-C 3.1 cables
- Are USB 3.0 and 3.1 cables the same?
They are different mostly in terms of speed. USB 3.0 cables (also known as USB 3.1 Gen 1) support speeds of up to 5Gbps, while USB 3.1 Gen 2 stretches up to 10Gbps and is also backward compatible (with USB 3.0 and USB 2.0).
- How fast is USB 3.1 Gen 2 theoretically?
Under the right conditions, USB 3.1 Gen 2 cables reach up to 0Gbit/s as data transfer speeds.
- What can USB Type C 3.1 do?
These cables are versatile and multi-purpose: they can propel faster data transfers, faster charging and even provide DisplayPort and HDMI/4K video support as well as Thunderbolt 3 ports.Editor's Note: This article was originally published in September 2017 and was revamped and updated in November 2020 for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.