Ensuring Reliable USB Connection on e Series Adapters

By: Arash Khazaie

3 Min Read

4 Apr, 2022

Docking Detect is a hardware-based solution that goes hand in hand with SimulCharge to provide a consistent and reliable connection between the mobile device and peripherals while it is being charged. It ensures that the initial communication between the mobile device and adapter, the so-called handshake or “greeting protocols,” are executed consistently and correctly every time they are plugged in. This makes Docking Detect a safeguard to ensure that SimulCharge adapters connect properly each time.

This feature was first introduced in the n Series (normal) and then the u Series (upgraded) products on our Enterprise line-up of products, as an upgrade to our now-legacy STS line. However, Docking Detect is not featured on the e Series (enhanced). Instead, a different approach was taken that involves both hardware and software to achieve a similar outcome.

The e Series line, which includes the eSynC adapters for USB-C mobile devices and eSTS adapters for Micro USB devices, doesn’t use Docking Detect because the hardware and software provide a similar result. These adapters feature Network Recovery & Battery Modulation (RBM) technology. RBM is a hardware-and-software solution that provides wired Ethernet recovery, battery protection against overcharging and screen brightness controls for permanent installations. You configure these features through the LAVA Tablet Manager (LTM) app, which is installed on the mobile device.

The LTM app provides a direct line of communication between the mobile device and the adapter. If that line of communication is lost for more than seven minutes, the adapter resets and tries to properly re-establish the connection. This occurs every seven minutes until the connection is re-established and LTM is able to communicate with the adapter. This reset, in turn, re-enumerates the USB ports on the adapter, reconnecting the peripherals.

This setup makes Docking Detect feature unnecessary. Docking Detect keeps the connection between the mobile device and peripherals consistent so that the mobile device remains in USB Host Mode and its connection to the peripherals doesn’t drop out. In contrast, the LTM app provides a solution that resets the connection if it does drop out. It’s the equivalent of unplugging the USB cable and plugging it back in.

So while the functionality varies slightly, the end result is the same – a reliable connection to the tablet. By leveraging the existing hardware and software used for RBM, LAVA engineers could avoid adding the additional components (and cost) required for Docking Detect. LAVA was able to cut down on parts and cost without hindering the functionality of the adapters.

While Docking Detect provides a consistent and reliable connection between our n and u Series adapters, the feature was not needed on the e Series line. The e Series’ RBM technology, which features the LTM app, accomplishes a similar result without the need for additional components.  LAVA’s e Series SimulCharge adapters provide a consistent and reliable connection between the mobile device and peripherals while it is being charged for a seamless experience.

Find out more about e Series adapters on LAVA’s website.