What is the difference between all the USB 2.0, 3.0, and 3.1 out there?

Let us explain to you in very simple words as technology keeps defining new heights.

USB  2.0 operates at a max. of 480Mbps transfer data called “high speed” and it only has 4 pins.  Generally defined in black color connector.

USB 3.0 operates at max. speed of 5Gbps transfer data rate called “super speed” and uses a blue connector to differentiate from USB 2.0 and has more pins.    

USB 3.1 Gen 1 is the same as USB 3.0.  USB 3.0 got a new name when the new speed USB 3.1 Gen 2 was released. 

USB 3.1 Gen 2 data transfers up to 10Gbps, at 100W of charging power also known as “charger and cable clutter” is defined with a red connector.  

USB is always backward compatible until the new USB-C where you may have to buy a new converter. 

*source www.usb.org  
updated 2018/04/01