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How is USB-C working out as a connector, from the ruggedness standpoint? It has a huge number of pins (24) in a small space. How many insertion cycles can it survive in the real world? Is connector wearout going to limit phone life?

Looks like the spec is 10,000 cycles: http://www.anandtech.com/show/8377/usb-typec-connector-speci...

That's over 13 cycles/day for two years. Probably fine for most users.

Edit: The official spec is only available via a zipped folder of PDFs, here's the particulars to save readers the effort.
  Durability or Insertion/Extraction Cycles (EIA 364-09)
  The durability ratings listed in Table 5-16 are specified for the USB 3.1 connectors.
  Table 5-16. Durability Ratings
  Connector   Standard Durability Class               High Durability Class
  USB 3.1     Standard-A connector 1500 cycles min    5000 cycles min
  USB 3.1     Standard-B connector 1500 cycles min    5000 cycles min
  USB 3.1     Micro connector family                  10000 cycles min
  The durability test shall be done at a maximum rate of 200 cycles per hour and no physical damage to any part of the connector or cable assembly shall occur.

13 cycles/day doesn't seem hard to hit. I have a charger at work and keep my phone on it when I'm at my desk. So right off that bat I'm at 2 cycles/day from going to work and coming home from work. Another for lunch.

Whenever I leave my desk, I take the phone with me so that the Health app can record steps and distance. Thus the phone comes with me on bathroom breaks, so that's a couple more.

I'll go talk to coworkers down the hall a couple times a day, adding a couple more cycles.

Every 30 minutes I get up and take a stroll around the office to mitigate the effects of sitting too long [1]. That's another maybe 10 cycles.

That's 17 cycles/day on work days, assuming no more cycles at home after work.

If I manage to have 6 more cycles at home on weekends or after work on work days, that will be bring my average over the week to 13 cycles/day.

[1] http://ergo.human.cornell.edu/CUESitStand.html

That's what the spec says. It remains to be seen how connectors perform in the real world, with all its dust and dirt.

Dust and dirt are a bitch.

The original 30 pin Apple connector wasn't bad, but when I looked at the new lightning connector I thought it would be a clear improvement. But now I'm not sure.

Lightning pins are quite small. I find my devices don't always make good contact. I find black stuff (oxidation?) building up on both pins and sockets.

Compared to lightning, USB-C just "feels" like it will be much worse. I predict it will be a disappointment in the real world (as most connectors turn out to be).

It is much worse. I've had a 2015 MacBook, a Razer Blade Stealth and a OnePlus 3. The cables are fragile and prone to breakage, the Razer's USB-C connector literally comes apart and all three of them have had pairing issues forcing you to pull the cable out and swap it around hoping it will actually connect.

I've not been surprised to see how slow the adoption of USB-C has been because I think it's obvious to insiders that the reliability issues are real. The shame is that when it works, it's great.

True. That thing has more pins in less space than anything previously exposed to consumer handling.

So the same as micro-USB... which is not very good in my experience. No-way near 10,000 cycles anyway. Something like half of my cables fail within 1000 cycles.

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