New USB Type-C connector and cable can also offer DisplayPort support

When products that use the recently finalized USB Type-C connector and cable start launching in smartphones, tablets and notebooks, they will also be able to support DisplayPort audio and video, thanks to a newly announced agreement between the USB 3.0 Promoter Group and the Video Electronics Standards Association (VESA).

The new feature is being called the DisplayPort Alternate Mode, or Alt Mode. According to VESA:

Using the DisplayPort Alt Mode, a USB Type-C connector and cable can deliver full DisplayPort audio/video (A/V) performance, driving monitor resolutions of 4K and beyond, SuperSpeed USB (USB 3.1) data and up to 100 watts of power–over a single cable. The DisplayPort Alt Mode can also drive adaptors that support the huge installed base of existing DisplayPort, HDMI, DVI, and VGA displays.

The press release added that those cables and connections can also connect to a DisplayPort device using a reversible USB Type-C to DisplayPort converter cable. So far there's no word on exactly when the first USB Type-C products and cables will go on sale, but they are expected to become available sometime in early 2015. Do you think adding DisplayPort support to USB Type-C is a good idea?

Source: VESA

John Callaham