Jul 26, 2016 | By:

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The new USB Type-C standard enables higher performance, promising convenience for users and simplicity for designers and manufacturers, but managing updates can present complex challenges. The initial specification was released in August 2014, a revision update to 1.1 followed in April 2015, then the most recent update to revision 1.2 in March 2016.

It isn’t easy to design products with an evolving specification with regular updates to add new features. It is also a challenge for engineers to spend limited resources on a project and verify its function and features only to find out there is new revision and ECN around the corner. Or worse yet, the product that was just released is now out of date.

With Fairchild’s FUSB302 family of controllers, you can update your device along with the specification updates and changes. The FUSB302 controllers are designed to be the Type-C and PD interface between the current system and the new Type-C connector. With this new approach, we have intentionally split the Type-C/PD system architecture into two separate components, hardware and software.

On the hardware side, we have built everything developers need to implement a Type-C design, including the Pull up (Rp), Pull down (Rd) and Vconn switches to fully support the Type-C specification. Additionally, the FUSB302 integrates the BMC transmitter and receiver to support PD applications. On the software side, we provide generic Type-C and PD firmware to support all types of applications. With this dual approach, users are able to continuously update their devices to the latest specifications. Below is a diagram highlighting our approach.

USB Type-C PD standards blog diagram

Streamlined update path

You can see the Fairchild solution has a much simpler structure than the integrated MCU solution…and a better cost structure as well, especially for multi-port applications. With Fairchild’s solution, the policy engine and Type-C state machine are kept on the system processor side to maximize the system processor’s usage. Firmware update processes are simple and easy when any updates are required by standard changes. With an integrated solution, customers have to work on both the system and PD controller sides for firmware updates, which increases both engineering time as well as total hardware cost.

As the USB Type-C standard continues to evolve, designers can find performance and simplicity implementing discrete, flexible solutions from Fairchild.

For more details on Fairchild’s complete portfolio of USB Type-C solutions, visit fairchildsemi.com/usbtype-c.

Visit the FUSB302 product folder for detailed information on the FUSB302 controller family, including datasheets, samples and evaluation boards.

This post is also available in: Chinese (Simplified)