Power Data Modules with Active USB connectors capable of charging electronic devices are becoming more common than even a year ago. For several years, our computers and laptops have been built standard with Active USB connectors—connectors capable of charging portable devices with a USB cable. The feature slowly trickled to power data modules (very slowly); but, as of 2013 the active USB connector is now available or standard on nearly all power data modules. What’s the big deal about active USB you may ask? Well, unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’re aware that USB connectors were initially only capable of data transfer with very little power capability. This limited capability was also the norm in power data modules. With the onset of active USB, not only could the connectors transfer data, but they could also power or charge devices. Now with active USB connectors available for conference/workstation table mounted, desktop mounted, and freestanding power data modules, users have access to charging for their phones, music players, and other portable devices anywhere they go. No more having to bring your USB cable and your power cord for you devices. Just bring your USB cable and you’re set.
Active USB connectors are not required in units where it is not standard. If you have a strong, irrational aversion to active USB connectors, you can still opt for passive USB connectors in your power data module. Keep in mind that it is best to future proof your power data modules (really anything for that matter) to save on the cost of upgrading in the future. Future upgrading of connectors could entail replacing a telecom plate or replacing the entire unit. Who knows what the future holds; however, it is best to err on the side of caution and make active USB connectors your go to for power data modules.