All You Need to Know About USB Power Delivery

USB Power Delivery USB-C Type-C Charging Cable

Created in the mid-1990s, USBs (Universal Serial Bus) are the general go-to standard for connecting devices, charging, and data communication. And with such a long running standard, it has been updated over the years with 2.0, 3.0, Micro-USB, and Type C versions (just to name a few).

While USB was once used as mainly for data communication with limited charging capabilities, many devices now use a USB primarily for charging. This includes many mobile phones, computers, and plenty of other devices. However, this can lead to some issues as certain devices or cables are not compatible with other types of ports. Compounding that is the fact that there are speed differences between different types of USB. Case in point, Type C is faster than USB 3.0 which in turn is faster than 2.0. This leads to a lot of e-waste as people are constantly buying new cables or devices when USB technology advances further.

 RAVPower Power Bank Charging Battery Saving


What is USB Power Delivery?

However, this issue of compatibility is about to be a thing of the past with the introduction of the USB Power Delivery Specification. USB Power Delivery (or PD, for short) is a single charging standard that can be used all across USB devices. Normally, each device charged by USB will have their own separate adapter, but not anymore. One universal USB PD will be able to power a wide variety of different devices.

Women Charging Power Bank Portable Charger iPhones Work Table

Three Great Features of USB Power Delivery?

So now that you know a bit about what the USB Power Delivery standard is, what are some of the big features that make it worthwhile? The biggest draw is that USB Power Delivery has increased standard power levels to up to 100W. This means your device will be able to charge much faster than before. Also, this will work for most devices and will be great for Nintendo Switch users, as there have been many complaints about it charging slow.

Another great feature of USB PD is the fact that the power direction is no longer fixed. In the past, if you plugged your phone into the computer, it would charge your phone. But with Power Delivery, the phone you plug in could be responsible for powering your hard drive.

Power Delivery will also ensure devices are not overcharged and will only provide the necessary amount of juice needed. While most smart phones won’t be able to take advantage of the added power, many other devices and computers will be able to.

iPhone Samsung Galaxy S8 Galaxy Charging

Power Delivery – Delivering The Future

In conclusion, this new standard for USB charging could change the world of technology as we know it. With Power Delivery, a range of devices can share their charges with one another and power each other without hassle. Power Delivery is simply a much easier and a streamlined way to go about charging all of your devices.

As our phones and devices continue to use up more and more power, USB Power Delivery is likely to become more and more common. Even power banks now have USB PD to charge or operate devices that demand a lot of power (think MacBooks, Switches, GoPros, drones and more). We are certainly looking forward to a future where power can be shared.

Are you using a device with USB Power Delivery? Let us know what you think.

Share power with your own USB Power Delivery power bank. Now $63.99 until March 7, use code GIAKOJRK when buying the RAVPower 26800mAh PD Power Bank.

20 Replies to “All You Need to Know About USB Power Delivery

    1. I hacked together a USB-PD trigger module and a dummy battery for my Panasonic g80 so now it runs from my power bank. Normal usb wouldn’t provide enough wattage through a booster (9v 1.5A minimum requirement)

    1. It’s much better than QC 3 in that it offers much higher wattage. I have a Pixel 2 and a Belkin PD USB-C charger. I never charge my phone overnight. It gets a full charge in about and hour and uses very little power if I leave it on overnight.

  1. What happens if you plug a power-only USB cable into a USB PD power supply, and then into a low voltage device like a mobile phone (5V)? Will the power supply say:
    “Oh, I’m missing a signal on 3 or more wires, so it must be a primitive device, so I’ll only send 5V at 2.4A”
    or will it say:
    “I’m sending the higher power (volts and/or amps) because you aren’t saying anything”?

    I’m assuming it’s the first one, i.e. there has to be a positive dialogue using the non-power wires, for it to step up the voltage from 5V, and if those wires aren’t there, it refuses to send any higher.

    1. Hi Alan, the PD protocol (5V, 9V, 12V, 15V, 20V) on the output of Port C when charging the device will output a set of signal packets (including 5V, 9V, 12V, 15V, 20V) to the charging device. After the charging device receives the signal, it will feedback a set of signals to the power bank (if the device needs 5V, it will feedback a 5V signal, and if 9V is required, it will feedback a 9V signal………..). In the end, the power bank receives feedback from the device, the corresponding voltage will be output.

  2. But a POWER-ONLY usb cable will not have a wire with which to send down a ‘signal packet’. So I’m asking what happens in that case.

    Maybe you’ve never seen a power-only USB cable, but they make them for magnetic plug/fasteners cables.

  3. Hi thanks for your article. I noticed from the new iPhone 20W adapter that the outputs are 5V/3A (15W) and 9V/2.22A (20W). If I were to buy a new adapter, must it have 9V/2.22A in order to support 20W?

  4. Hi. I used RavPower powerbank with PD port to charge my Galaxy Note 20 Ultra. But it doesnt show “Super Fast Charging” as it does with a normal PD port from a Travel Adaptor. It just shows normal “Fast charging” and takes long too.

  5. Hi, i’m Victor, how can i know this Type C to C cable is fast charge ? and watts ? does PIQ USB to type C cable better ? or Qualcomm 3.0 , 4.0 adapter and cable better ?

  6. it’s said that in ravpower 20000maH, there are 3 inputs(microusb, lighting and pd) and 3 outputs (q.c, ismart and pd). i just want to know if the PD port can be used both as input and output??

  7. Strange question: is there such a thing as a USA 2-prong female to USB-male adapter? Or do I need to buy a different adapter for every country I visit?

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