Video Explains Why British Wall Sockets Are the Best Ever

british wall plug

If you live in or have ever visited the UK, you are no doubt familiar with the monster British wall plugs. These gigantic three-pronged plastic beasts make packing a phone charger in your small bag annoying, but they are surprisingly safe. English tinkerer and video-maker Tom Scott make a video extolling the virtues of the humble British wall socket (and its clunky partner, the wall plug).

Scott’s video explains why British plugs are plainly superior to American and European plugs, and he makes some very good points. First, the pin holes that could shock you if you stick something into them aren’t open all the time; they only open when the slightly longer “ground” pin of a plug is inserted, making it virtually impossible to shock yourself by sticking a screwdriver into a socket.

uk plug and socket design

Additionally, the “live” and “neutral” pins of the plug are insulated halfway up their length, meaning that even if a plug is only inserted in the socket halfway and you happen to touch one of the pins, you won’t get a jolt. Then there’s the construction of the inside of the plug, which we’ll let Tom explain in the video above. If you didn’t think the British design was brilliant before, this clever and funny video will probably make you a believer.

submit to reddit
See more in Industrial Design or under Technology. September, 2014.