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Google engineer: Bad OnePlus USB-C cables could damage your phone

When OnePlus announced a USB Type-C cable for just £3.99, we were all impressed.

But a Google engineer has warned customers against picking up the bargain accessory.

According to Bensen Leung, a Google engineer who has recently reviewed a number of USB-C accessories, the cable “may cause damage to your charger, hub, or PC USB port”.

Leung specifically names Google’s Chromebook Pixel, Nexus 6P, and Nexus 5X as devices that you shouldn’t use the cable with.

However, he admits that there is less risk using the cable with the OnePlus 2, because that particular device doesn’t feature fast-charging.

“But you should still not have these cables around in case you get a newer fast-charge capable tablet, phone, or laptop,” adds the engineer, who has been nicknamed the ‘USB Vigilante’.

According to Leung, the problem is that the OnePlus USB-C cable uses the wrong identifier resistor, and calls the company’s accessories “out of spec”.

Related: Best Android Smartphones 2015

He says the “riskiest state” would be plugging a fully drained phone into a legacy adapter with the “bad cable”.

That’s because the charge that a phone draws is on a curve, so the device draws less current as you get closer to 100% capacity.

With a drained phone, you’ll be drawing higher current; if the charger is poorly made, you might be getting the wrong voltage – both combined means trouble.

Have you bought a OnePlus USB Type C accessory? Tell us about your experience in the comments.

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