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The Xbox and Xbox 360 controllers have extra connections a few inches after the male USB connector. What is the purpose of this extra connection?

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up vote 11 down vote accepted

It's so that the controller becomes unplugged at the breakaway point when the cable is pulled a little, rather than yanking on your console or controller. This design mitigates the age old "tripped on the controller cable; yanked my NES off the entertainment center" conundrum.

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Don't forget bent and ruined connectors and wrecked cables. –  SevenSidedDie Apr 11 '13 at 3:49
    
Haha. So why not use a magnet, sort of like apple. Those are the only connectors I've ever seen actually disconnect when tripped over. –  Keegan McCarthy Apr 11 '13 at 5:47
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Really? I thought I was always lucky when I was wading through the mess in my room and tripped over the Xbox cable. You're telling me Microsoft designed that for me? <3 –  Joetjah Apr 11 '13 at 6:48
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@KeeganMcCarthy: Well, Apple has a patent on those connectors. –  André Paramés Apr 11 '13 at 8:28
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