Samsung’s move to USB-C with the Galaxy S8 and S8+ is a huge boost for the advancement of charging in Android devices. The Galaxy S line is the most popular Android smartphone and any changes it adopts usually makes waves in the industry.
USB-C is similar to Apple’s Lightning port where the charging tip is fully reversible. Micro USB had to be placed into your smartphone in one direction to get it to fit properly. Where micro USB and Lightning differ from USB-C, is one end has to be USB A style that fits into full size USB ports (blocky rectangular style you’ve seen for years). USB-C can have the same plug on both ends of the cable.
If you have a USB-C to USB-C cable, like this one from AUKEY, or a USB C to micro USB cable, you can use your Samsung Galaxy S8 (or any other smartphone with USB-C) to charge other smartphones. While it may not be ideal to use your new Android smartphone as a battery pack for other phones, it’s a very useful feature to have when your friends or family need extra juice.
How to charge other smartphones with your Samsung Galaxy S8
You’ll need to have the cables I listed above in order to take advantage of this feature. USB-C is bi-directional, meaning power can go in either direction. Simply plug one end into the bottom of your Samsung Galaxy S8 and plug the other end into your LG G6, OnePlus 3 or other compatible devices. Once connected, a menu will pop up asking if you want to charge the other device, or even charge your Galaxy S8. Since the devices are connected, you can even directly transfer media files, images or connect to a MIDI device.
This has been a known feature of USB-C since it showed up on the Nexus 6P and 5X, however those phones were usually limited to enthusiasts where the Galaxy S8 is for everyone. If you or your friends are even in need of power, remember your USB-C smartphone can be used as a backup battery in those times when power is low.
Features of USB-C
- 10Gbps max data transfer speed
- 20V/5A max output power
- Reversible plug
- Compatible with new Apple Macbooks