We routinely use off-the-shelf USB cables for debugging and testing of our designs. Whether we’re qualifying an off-the-shelf USB charger for a customer application or testing a custom design’s USB port, it’s convenient to have bare leads attached to a USB connector. With USB C, it becomes challenging to solder directly to the connector, as the pins are finer pitch and smaller than previous generations of USB. With this particular teardown, we noted that the red wire is actually connected to ground and the shield is actually connected to Vbus! This is a good reminder to always test the assumptions of wire colors when using cheap, off-the-shelf cables!