Ahead of CES 2017 Lenovo has quietly refreshed its entire ThinkPad line with an update to the slightly faster Kaby Lake processor from Intel. Besides new version of laptops that have honest-to-god DVD players (ThinkPad L570) and VGA ports (ThinkPad L470) installed, Lenovo also saw all those beautiful gadgets that exploded this year and decided that it would maybe make sure its own laptops don’t go poof like so many Note 7s and Chromebooks. So for next year Lenovo has equipped its refreshed line of ThinkPads with a chip to keep them from exploding due to a bad USB-C connection.
While it was ultimately the batteries that gave Samsung its big boom headache this fall, USB-C cables have also been the subject of scorn. As noted by Google engineer Benson Leung, not all USB-C cables are made equally and a bad cord could easily over charge or under charge a device, ruining the precarious balance that exist in the batteries of all consumer devices.