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The Computer Audiophile

USB Hardware DRM Coming

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Consumers just can’t kill DRM. 

 

Today the USB-IF, the non-profit behind the USB standard's marketing and specifications, revealed the formal launch of its "USB Type-C™ Authentication Program," originally announced back in 2016. The optional program "defines cryptographic-based authentication for USB Type-C chargers and devices." If that sounds like a thinly veiled euphemism for hardware DRM to you, that's because it is.”

 

https://www.androidpolice.com/2019/01/02/usb-type-c-authentication-program-gets-started-sounds-like-its-effectively-drm-for-type-c-devices/

 

 

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1 hour ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

Consumers just can’t kill DRM. 

 

Today the USB-IF, the non-profit behind the USB standard's marketing and specifications, revealed the formal launch of its "USB Type-C™ Authentication Program," originally announced back in 2016. The optional program "defines cryptographic-based authentication for USB Type-C chargers and devices." If that sounds like a thinly veiled euphemism for hardware DRM to you, that's because it is.”

 

https://www.androidpolice.com/2019/01/02/usb-type-c-authentication-program-gets-started-sounds-like-its-effectively-drm-for-type-c-devices/

 

 

 

Possibly a last attempt for them to be relevant (and mabye make some money) before it's all wireless?

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Well, I think the intent is to stop people creating fire hazards with dodgy chargers. No mention of DRM anywhere.

 

https://usb.org/sites/default/files/article_files/USB_Type-C_Authentication_PR_FINAL.pdf

 

 

Quote

USB Type-C Authentication empowers host systems to protect against non-compliant USB chargers and to mitigate risks from malicious firmware/hardware in USB devices attempting to exploit a USB connection. Using this protocol, host systems can confirm the authenticity of a USB device, USB cable or USB charger, including such product aspects as the capabilities and certification status. All of this happens right at the moment a connection is made – before inappropriate power or data can be transferred.

 

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6 hours ago, mjb said:

... No mention of DRM anywhere. ...

 

The mechanism sounds similar to that used for HDMI's HDCP. For HDCP, a source device can refuse to output to an unauthenticated device, or output lower resolution video. For USB, it would be easy to require a DAC to authenticate as an audio device, but harder to enforce restrictions on what was fed from the source. Unlike HDMI, USB is a general purpose bus.

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I might well be wrong, I often am; but I suspect the authentication is related more towards the power capabilities of USB-C

From what I read it is possible to provide up to 20V at 5A, not something you would want to feed into your mobile phone ☹️

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