The New Samsung Galaxy S8 and S8+ with Plugable USB-C Products

One of the necessities for working at Plugable is having a passion for technology. So imagine the excitement when we hear about an upcoming device that breaks the mold, and the subsequent crowd that gathers around such devices when they arrive in our office. This is especially true with the Samsung Galaxy S8 and S8+, which are among the first phones to support exciting new USB-C functionality such as Alternate Mode video output (“Alt Modes”) and USB Power Delivery (“PD”). (Though at this time it is not well understood if Samsung is indeed using the USB PD standard for charging or another method.)

Our new Galaxy S8 arrived yesterday and we immediately dove into testing with our USB-C products. My personal Galaxy S8+ arrived the same day at home, so I brought it in today to put it through the same battery of tests with our products, and found that both handsets behave identically. We’ll continue to provide updates regarding compatibility in this post, on the relevant product pages on our site, and on our Amazon listings. (YouTube overview of the Samsung S8/S8+ and Plugable USB-C products coming soon as well!)

We’ve learned a fair bit about how this device reacts to different peripherals, so feel free to comment below if you have any particular questions and we’ll do our best to answer.

Test Results as of 4/21/2017

USB-C Docking Stations
Our USB-C docks work well with these devices overall, with one disappointing caveat: USB-C connected displays didn’t perform as expected. We were hoping that we would see a similar experience to what the Samsung “DeX” dock offers, but it looks like the handsets detect whether the connected dock is the DeX Station and then make a decision to launch the DeX software suite (while keeping the feature disabled on non-Samsung docks and video output devices). We haven’t found any work-around for this, but we are attempting to work with Samsung to see if this can be resolved.

Charging was limited to 5V for everything except the charger that came with the handsets. Even with the included charger, The phones only negotiates the higher 9V charging mode if the screen is locked, either in always-on display mode or with the display off.

  • USB-C Single Display Docking Station with Charging (UD-CA1): Alt Mode” HDMI Output is Compatible, charges at 5V
  • USB-C Triple Display Docking Station with Charging (UD-ULTCDL): “Alt Mode” HDMI Output is Compatible, charges at 5V (DisplayLink displays through the Triple Display dock also work using the Android DisplayLink Presenter app. This still only mirrors the phone display, so no real added value over using the USB-C Alt Mode output.)

USB-C Alt Mode Display Adapters
These behave the same as our docking station display outputs, mirroring the screen only. Screen rotation to portrait or landscape mode behaves as expected, rotating the image on the attached display.

  • USB-C to DisplayPort Cable (USBC-DP): Compatible
  • USB-C to HDMI Cable (Coming soon! USBC-HDMI-CABLE): Compatible
  • USB-C to VGA Cable (Coming soon! USBC-VGA-CABLE): Compatible
  • USB-C to DVI Dongle (USBC-DVI): Compatible
  • USB-C to HDMI Dongle (USBC-HDMI): Compatible
  • USB-C to VGA Dongle (USBC-VGA): Not Compatible

USB-C Hubs and Accessories

USB Ethernet Adapters
This is a break from the expected behavior with Samsung phones. In previous generation devices, none of our Ethernet adapters have worked, which seemed to be an intentional choice considering the drivers should be built-in to the kernel. The obvious change here is support for the Dex dock, which has an Ethernet adapter built-in. Adapters that aren’t natively USB-C will require a USB-C adapter, such as the USBC-AF3.

  • USB-C Gigabit Ethernet Adapter (USBC-E1000): Compatible
  • USB-A 3.0 and 2.0 Ethernet Adapters (Compatible with USB-A to C adapter such as USBC-AF3 below) (Though the native USBC-E1000 adapter above will be the best choice for most.)

USB-C Cables and Test Equipment

  • USB-C to USB-A Adapter Cable (USBC-AF3): Compatible
  • USB-C to USB-C USB 3.1 Gen2 USB-IF Certified Cable (USBC-C100): Compatible
  • Thunderbolt 3 USB-C Cables (40Gb .5m; 20Gb 1m; 20Gb 2m): Compatible
  • USB-C Voltage and Amperage Meter (USB-VAMETER): Compatible

Please comment below to share any additional compatibility information or with questions — thanks!

30 comments on “The New Samsung Galaxy S8 and S8+ with Plugable USB-C Products”

    • Sam Morgan Reply

      Great suggestion! Unfortunately, this didn’t work. I was able to create a shortcut to DeX Home, but any attempts to launch it had no reaction in several different docking setups. App info below:

      Application: Samsung DeX Home

  1. Martin Reply

    And one more Question: Did the USB Ports work on the Display Docking Stations?

    • Sam Morgan Reply

      Thanks for asking!

      Yes, they worked. I was able to attach a mouse, keyboard, and flash card reader simultaneously when testing with the UD-ULTCDL.

  2. David P. Novakovic (@dpn) Reply

    Hey this is awesome… probably going to grab some of these items then.

    One question I have is whether the phone can charge wirelessly while a usb – c -> video cable is plugged in? This would in some ways remove the need for a docking station if you’re happy using bluetooth devices etc!


    • Sam Morgan Reply

      Great question, thanks for asking!

      I gave it a try and I was able to use a Qi charger while simultaneously mirroring the display and attaching a USB flash drive. It looks like the USB-C port is fully capable while wireless charging.

  3. Renato Pace Reply

    Hi! i would like to know if Dex would work with the Asus mb169c+ portable monitor as it has a type c connection. Then I would need a HDMI-Type C adaptor right? Thanks a lot!!

    • Sam Morgan Reply

      As far as we know, the DeX Home software package only works with the Samsung DeX Station. The monitor you linked would likely connect directly to the phone without any sort of interface adapter.

      I would suggest contacting Samsung directly for compatibility information.

      • Renato Pace Reply

        Hi Sam. Thanks for the info. I would like to use the Dex (with the docked s8) with this monitor. Is it possible? This monitor is powered through the usb-c cable and I dont think Dex has one to power it. Does HDMI supplies power? Thanks!

  4. Rik Reply

    It connects fine with the ultcdl, but alas no dex experience here either. 🙁

    Any news on how to start dex experience?

    • Sam Morgan Reply

      Unfortunately, Samsung has blocked the usage of DeX Home with display adapters other than the DeX Station on the Galaxy S8 and S8+. We hope this will change in the future, but for now Samsung hardware is required.

  5. Darcy Parker Reply

    Hey great video – Thx. When I got my S8+ and read about Dex, I thought I would be in a position where I could leave my laptop in the office and use Anyconnect VPN and Microsoft Remote Desktop to get to my laptop. With a blue tooth keyboard and mouse, that would be the cats MEOW. However, Dex required me to remove my case, and Remote desktop would not not full screen on Dex. Thinking, as most hotels have HDMI available on the TV, would your C to HDMI work or me?

    Darcy Parker

    • David Washburn Reply

      Hi Darcy, thanks for asking! Our USBC-HDMI adapter and USBC-HDMI-CABLE do work with the Samsung Galaxy S8, however the display will not fill the entire screen and does not offer the same Samsung Dex experience.

  6. Alfred Hitchcock Reply

    Hello there,

    I’m using the USB-C Gigabit Ethernet Adapter for my S8 when I’m somewhere that doesn’t have WiFi, but it drains the battery on the phone at a staggering rate.

    There is a popup saying that the device (the ethernet adapter) is being charged. Maybe the phone is wasting battery by trying to charge the USB device, i.e. the adapter?

    Have you had any experience of this issue?

    Don’t forget to scream,

    • Sam Morgan Reply

      Thanks for asking! The “charging” message is expected, the phone will show this notification any time power is being passed to a device. Using our USB-C Multimeter, our USBC-E1000 pulls between 120mA-160mA, which is a negligable amount of power. I wouldn’t expect this sort of draw to noticeably decrease battery life.

      I’d suggest using a battery monitoring application (third-party or built-in) to see what’s draining your battery. If this doesn’t bring any answers forward, please contact us at so we can help investigate!

  7. Harold Hallikainen Reply

    Can the Ethernet adapter be used to share the cellular Internet connection? If I have several devices that require wired Ethernet access to the Internet, can I connect them and the phone (with Ethernet adapter) to an Ethernet switch and get Internet access on the wired devices?


    • Gary Zeller Reply

      Thanks for posting your comment, Harold! This ethernet adapter would not work for the setup you describe, as Android devices are unable to share a mobile data connection with other devices with the exception of mobile hotspot features.

      • doug champion Reply

        Hello this is a great thread. I am new to smart phone world. thank you. I guess I have the same question as Harold, but more generally. Is there any way to connect the S8 hotspot to a switch or router to connect wired devices such as NAS and printer. Can I use the Dex or can you just tether with usb to cat5?
        I had hoped to replace my poor (.45 mips) DSL connection for inhouse wired network with a hotspot, but it sounds like maybe not? Thanks.

        • Patrick T Reply

          Unfortunately we wouldn’t recommend this type of setup. Due to the nature of Android, you can’t really setup the mobile hotspot to share the mobile data with anything other than a single computer. You might be able to setup network sharing from the PC, but this would require some advanced setup we won’t be able to assist with. Your best option, given the description, would be and try to setup the printer as a network device to hopefully access it from other devices. At the end of the day, the Plugable adapter wouldn’t be a good fit for trying to workaround the home network limitations. Apologies we don’t have a device that would work for the setup you’re looking to attempt.

  8. poumpoumk Reply

    Hi, there !

    Nice article. I just wanted to know, when you say “(UD-ULTCDL): “Alt Mode” HDMI” it means DisplayPort Alternate Mode over USB-C with a DisplayPort -> HDMI converter inside the UD-ULTCDL ? Because I can’t find any information about the Galaxy S8 compatibility with the HDMI Alternate Mode (which is really new and I don’t think anyone is using at the moment). We know for sure that it is compatible with DisplayPort but that’s it.

    • Joshua Henry Reply


      You are correct in that our UD-ULTCDL uses USB-C VESA DisplayPort Alternate Mode and is then converted to HDMI internally within the dock.

      If you have any additional questions just let us know!

    • Sam Morgan Reply

      Unfortunately, the Galaxy S8 can’t act as a host for a Thunderbolt 3 device like our TBT3-UDV

  9. L Harker Reply

    you say above that the USB-C Flash Card Reader (USBC-FLASH3) is compatible with the Galaxy S8 but on the product page mention that 95% of android devices need to be rooted. So is it compatible? I won’t mess with my phone that way but trying to find a usb-c sd card reader to use with it. Thanks

    • Sam Morgan Reply

      Thanks for asking! The USBC-FLASH3 does indeed work out of the box with the S8 and S8+. Samsung in general is good about supporting external storage, and has continued that excellent behavior with these devices.

  10. stephen russell Reply

    I have a Galaxy S8 and due to this article saying that the USBC-E100 is compatible with the Galaxy S8, I bought a USBC-E1000. Well now the I have it I can’t seem to get it to work. so then I go to the USBC-E1000 page and it says its not compatible with android. so is it compatible or not? And if so, then what app do I need to make use of it?

    • Kevin Reply

      Hello Stephen,

      Thanks for reaching out to us! I see that we’ve also received a ticket from you on our email support channel in which I’ve replied. With respect, in looking at the product page we do mention that the adapter is, “Not compatible with Android tablets”. Support in Android is dependent on the device manufacturer as they must support these types of adapters and include the drivers for the chipset in their OS builds.

      But, overall we’ve typically seen good compatibility with phones we or customers have tried personally, and received reports about. We would suggest to try putting the adapter into airplane mode which may force the wired connection to go through. We’ve seen from our testing, and reports from other users that this adapter is compatible with the Galaxy S8 Line. If you would, please continue chatting with us via the support ticket and we’ll go through troubleshooting.

      Thank you,

      Plugable Support

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