USB-C connectors and SD card slots by GCT

High product quality and broad capabilities of the standard.

Since USB-C connectors became an official standard applicable in the European Union, the demand for various variants thereof has been growing steadily. Global Connector Technology (GCT)  is one of the leading suppliers specialising in manufacturing USB-C ports and plugs.

This article contains an overview of the product range offered by GCT (Global Connector Technology), a company specialising in connectors installed in compact mobile device enclosures, PC peripherals, IoT circuits (Internet of Things) and diverse types of modules, mostly for industrial and remote control applications (e.g. alarm systems). The manufacturer offers a broad range of such products as: USB-C connectors, storage media slots or SIM card slots. They are not only characterised by their compatibility with popular standards, but also their excellent value for money.

This article covers the following issues:

  • Key advantages of the USB-C standard
  • Are USB-C connectors a European standard?
  • Characteristics and versions of connectors offered by GCT
  • Diverse assortment of memory and telecommunication card slots

USB-C connectors

Firstly, it must be noticed that the USB-C standard refers to physical connectors and does not guarantee full compatibility with specifications such as USB 3.2, the transmission speed specified in the characteristics of this interface, its full functionality, etc. The GCT products are developed primarily to provide durable and compact power supply/charging connections that comply with the latest regulations. Whilst all USB Type C connectors support both power supply / charging, USB3.2 data transmission is only available on 24 posn devices, whilst the USB 2.0 communication std can be realized on 16 posn parts. When only Charging (ie no data transmission) is required, the GCT 6 posn USB Type C product range offers the most cost-effective solution.

Capabilities offered by the standard

The USB-C connector format has swiftly become popular, which has recently resulted in the fact that it is specified as a standard connector in the European Union. All mobile devices released for sale in the Member States must be equipped with this connector format. It ensures not only consumer’s comfort, but also reduction in electro waste generation, as buying a new phone or other device does not mean that the previous charger will turn out to be incompatible.

The GCT connectors implemented in projects come with all advantages offered by this format. The first such advantage is its compact size. Reversibility is another one, as the plug can be connected in two positions, after reversing it by 180°. The third key advantage is the possibility to “maximise” the power supply delivery between devices (up to 240W ( 5A @48 V DC) on 24 and 16-pin versions maximizing USB Power Delivery capabilities).

16-pin versions
Middle board mount type
Vertical installation

Global Connector Technology products

Note also that GCT ports come in several installation variants, which ensures space savings inside device enclosures (or on a PCB). The most typical connector format is designed for SMT assembly, although usually also incorporating THT shell stakes to improve the mounting stability of the entire component. Moreover, the product range also includes models with both surface-mounted leads and shell stakes (Fully SMT). The third variant facilitates installing the components in such a manner that the connector symmetry axis overlaps with the PCB cross-section, known as a Mid-mount configuration. The connector is placed in a laminate slot to obtain an ultra-low circuit profile being a perfect solution for the design of smartphones, tablets, games consoles, smart watches and other hardware in which, literally, every cubic millimetre of internal space counts.GCT USB Type C products are also available in vertical versions (in relation to a PCB), used for example, in docking stations, certain charger types, etc.

Note also that USB-C connectors offered by Global Connector Technology are characterised with high reliability, as the manufacturer has fully tested their mechanical life at 10,000 or even 20,000 mating cycles (2x USB Industry standard).

SD and SIM card slots

Another notable group in the GCT product range includes slots for SD and SIM cards, i.e. storage media and cards providing access to wireless telecommunication networks. In this range, the manufacturer provides a broad and diverse assortment of surface-mounted components. They come with gold-plated contacts (resistant to corrosion, in particular typical atmospheric humidity) and can operate within an extensive temperature range, even from -40°C to 85°C (depending on the model). Table of photos:

Mini SIM
Micro SIM
Nano SIM

The GCT assortment of slots includes both models with a self-locking mechanism, e.g. push-pull or push-push, for easy card insertion into an enclosure slot, and models with a tilted cover, mainly used for embedding cards in elements where they are rarely replaced (e.g. industrial modules or alarm system circuits). The table above provides an overview of formats available in the manufacturer’s portfolio, i.e. slots compatible with microSD and Mini/Micro/Nano SIM cards.

The constant demand on communication and memory card slots is related to the development of devices that aggregate and store significant amounts of data. They include not only consumer products, such as : smartphones, video recorders or cameras, but also professional hardware (meters, counters). Communication over mobile networks has become increasingly common in the IoT sector (Internet of Things), which includes not only household gadgets, but also remotely-controlled environmental condition sensors (for example, used in agriculture, infrastructure or meteorology), street light controllers, vehicle fleet monitors, etc. Products offered by Global Connector Technology contribute to extending the life cycle of such equipment, and at the same time ensure cost optimisation in terms of manufacturing.

Text prepared by Transfer Multisort Elektronik Sp. z o.o.