Select Reliable Connectors for Mobile Devices

Jane N. Awittor

November 26, 2013

1 Min Read
Select Reliable Connectors for Mobile Devices

If you've spent any time looking for the right connector to use in a smartphone or other mobile device, you might believe that all fine-pitch, low-profile connectors are created equal. But they're not.

In spite of similarities in package size and pitch, at least on their datasheets, these connectors differ in subtle ways that can affect their reliability during the assembly process and in use. Here are the key technical factors to consider when looking for a reliable connector for use in mobile devices:

  • Tolerates mechanical forces. The board-to-board and board-to-FPC connections within mobile devices have to withstand substantial forces, from insertion forces during assembly to shock and vibration forces in use. A robust contact geometry is the first line of defense against these forces.

    Contains the solder. The low-profile connectors used in mobile devices are susceptible to damage from solder rise. The best connectors will provide an integrated nickel barrier to keep the solder in its place.

    Resists corrosion. Corrosive gases generated during the assembly process can damage connectors, ultimately shortening their life. Look for connectors with an anti-corrosion surface treatment.

    Stays in alignment. Coplanarity of the connector pins may not be the most obvious product selection factor, but it directly affects insertion force and the connector's ability to withstand repeated insertions. Look for connectors with the best coplanarity specs.

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- Jane N. Awittor is a product engineer for Panasonic Electric Works Corporation of America.

About the Author(s)

Jane N. Awittor

Jane N. Awittor is a product engineer for Panasonic Electric Works Corporation of America. She's an electrical engineer with five years of experience specializing in passive IR (PIR), IR arrays, and pressure sensors.

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