Why is the micro USB so fragile compared to mini USB cable ends?

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Why is the micro USB so fragile compared to mini USB cable ends?
I bought a bunch of micro-USB cables recently from Frys, and almost half of them have had the two little nubs on the top of the male micro-USB connector disappear.
I don't know if they fall off, or if they get pressed down, or if they bend, or what, but the cables just fall out of the various devices I use them in (earbuds, smart phones, speakerphones, etc.).
Is it that micro_USB is inherently more fragile than mini_USB? Or is it just bad cables from Frys?
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On Wed, 20 Aug 2014 04:38:17 +0000 (UTC), Avraham Bernholz

It is the price you pay for "small"
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Avraham Bernholz wrote:

It's deliberate ... with USB and miniUSB the contacts and retaining springs are in the socket and wear out after 1,000 to 2,000 insertions; with microUSB the wear is intended to happen within the plug, because the cable can be more easily replaced, they're also rated for more like 10,000 insertions.
I have sometimes managed to persuade the "nibs" back into life with the end of pin, but cables are cheap.
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Sounds like you are using the cables a lot . That would be plugging the cables in betwen 3 and 10 times each day.
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My cell phone uses a charger with a micro-USB plug. If these were of such poor quality that they went bad after a few hundred insertions, you can imagine the reactions of the manufacturer and owner.
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I expect Frys probably just bought these cables in bulk from a Chinese supplier.
The mentality of consumers in China is different. In China, if something is inexpensively priced they EXPECT it's not going to last very long. The problem is that the buyers from companies like Harbour Freight intentionally try to seek out suppliers in China that will supply goods at the lowest cost, and to the Chinese that means the "lowest quality". (See PS below)
I expect that if you purchased the cables from a well respected company, like Belkin, then your cables would still have been made in China, but would have been made to a much higher standard of quality. Most of the products Apple sells in North America are made by a factory in China to Apple's own quality control standards. So, the problem is not where it's made or who sells it, it's in the fact that North Americans are going to China looking for the least expensive products to maximize their sales profits, and the Chinese understand that they're after poorly made goods that won't last long.
Maybe buy a single Belkin micro-USB cable and see how well it stands up compared to the junk you bought from Frys.
PS: Exactly the same thing happened after WWII. Japan had been defeated and it's manufacturing capacity had been destroyed along with two of it's major manufacturing centers (Hiroshima and Nagasaki). Unable to produce goods from steel anymore, Japan began producing inexpensive plastic goods for sale in North America, and for a good decade after the end of the war, "Made in Japan" was an indication of poor quality. The Japanese themselves wondered why Americans wanted poorly made products. Now that that little misunderstanding has been cleared up, Japan produces some of the highest quality optical goods (like cameras, microscopes and telescopes) in the world along with some of the best consumer electronics.
--
nestork

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On Wed, 20 Aug 2014 14:35:12 +0000 (UTC), Avraham Bernholz

L-com http://www.l-com.com/usb-cable-assemblies
Their prices are good and the quality is excellent. Plus, you can get right angle cables ... and left, up, or down as well.
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Avraham Bernholz wrote:

Replace the connectors, they are cheap enough.
http://www.ebay.com/itm/121338466227
--
Anyone wanting to run for any political office in the US should have to
have a DD214, and a honorable discharge.
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On Wed, 20 Aug 2014 07:08:24 -0700, William Sommerwerck wrote:

'cause the phone makers got together and decided on a "universal" connector for charging. Under pressure from the consumer about the being fleeced for chargers with only difference being the propritary connector.

Do people keep a phone that long? People here seem to upgrade every tweleve months or when ever they can twist their provider in to it.
Personally I don't like micro USB. It's too small, doesn't self guide on insertion, the orientation is non-obvious and with the lack of self guidance is the thing not going together because it's miss aligned or the wrong way up? Mini USB doesn't suffer those problems.
--
Cheers
Dave.
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Dave Liquorice wrote:

Physically, I will admit the apple lightning connector is nicer, it's still small, is reversible and it inserts smoothly, but I wouldn't want a proprietary connector.
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Main downside is that the contacts are all exposed on the end of the cable. That hasn’t bitten me yet, but it will sometime.

Yeah, I'd much rather have the same connector on everything.
But particularly with some very small devices like the Nokia BH-505 bluetooth headset, I do like the tiny proprietary Nokia jack because that has just a tiny hole in the headset, under a bit of rubber that stops water and sweat getting in it when the headset is being used.
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Michael A. Terrell wrote, on Wed, 20 Aug 2014 14:02:13 -0400:

I didn't know you *could* (easily) replace the connectors! And, at 5 cents each, no less.
How can they possibly make money selling those micro usb connectors for 5 cents each, with shipping from Szechuan China being 80 cents?
BTW, are they crimp on? Glue on? Solder on? What? http://www.ebay.com/itm/121338466227
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You sure about that 80c ? I've got lots of stuff for $1 total cost.

Those are definitely solder, you can see that in the second and third last photos.
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Avraham Bernholz wrote, on Wed, 20 Aug 2014 14:35:12 +0000:

Here is a picture of a few of the bad microUSB cables: http://tinypic.com/view.php?pic=wvu1e8&s=8
This 6 foot long Belken cable no longer has any nubs: http://tinypic.com/view.php?pic=n4fhj9&s=8
So the Belken (on the right) didn't have any more nub than the no-name brand on the left (in this picture below): http://tinypic.com/view.php?pickw2s2&s=8
I'm confused how I'm supposed to buy a good micro USB cable when even the Belken brand loses its nubs.
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I've got one that is used for the Logitech mouse and keyboard charging and it hasn’t lost its nubs. Its been used every week or so for charging both the mouse and keyboard, every week for each. Came with one of them from logitech. From memory I got one with each and have just used the one to charge both.
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Ralph Mowery wrote, on Wed, 20 Aug 2014 09:15:02 -0400:

I don't think I'm using it any more than anyone else. I was just guessing at the number of insertions. It's only a couple times a day that it's used, on average.
Anyway, they failed in far fewer than 10,000 cycles, so, I'm assuming the micro USB standard is seriously flawed, or, I'm just getting bad cables from Frys.
Here is what Frys had today for USB cables in the components area:
http://oi61.tinypic.com/2dl23dc.jpg
So, I bought a 3 foot and 6 foot replacement:
http://oi61.tinypic.com/30ljkt1.jpg
We'll see how they fare, but, most seem to lose their nubs in a few months like these two cables did:
http://oi60.tinypic.com/16kw2s2.jpg
The one at left is no name, the one at right has Belkin molded on it. Maybe it's a fake? But I bought it at Frys, for sure.
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Yeah, that's one obvious possibility.

Dunno if they have ever sold fake Belkins.
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Michael A. Terrell wrote, on Wed, 20 Aug 2014 14:02:13 -0400:

I also have to replace the Duracell USB wall charger I bought from Frys, as it just fell apart in my hands today!
http://tinypic.com/view.php?pic=2vjpnv8&s=8
That could have been dangerous because it left that missing pin in hot port of the wall socket!
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Have a look at the charger teardowns on youtube
You may never buy a non branded mains charger from china again.
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On 08/20/2014 12:56 PM, Avraham Bernholz wrote:

I'm getting bummed out on Duracell chargers and rechargeables. Several years ago (maybe 2008) I bought a set of the precharged Duracells -- supposed to maintain a charge while sitting on a shelf for nearly a year -- and the spares (charged at the same time as the ones in my camera) are dead when the ones I've been using in my camera die. The Duracell charger (the BIG one!) stopped working within 2 years. I now carry more Kirkland AAs with me Just In Case.
Are the Eneloops any better?
--
Cheers, Bev
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