Your laptop computer by no means has sufficient ports–particularly if it is the Macbook Air this information was written on. That forces you to hold an array of dongles so you possibly can plug every part in. Thankfully, there’s a greater manner. USB hubs can broaden the quantity and type of ports obtainable, and USB docks allow you to flip a laptop computer right into a full-blown workstation with one plug. After testing a number of totally different USB hubs and docks, these are the very best we have discovered for various wants.
In search of different residence workplace gizmos and devices? We have got a variety of guides that may assist, like our Finest Work From Dwelling Gear, Finest USB Flash Drive, and Finest Transportable Exterior Storage Drives roundups.
Replace Could 2023: We added the Anker 568 and Anker 778 docks.
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Do You Want a Hub or a Dock?
There is a gray space between USB hubs and docks since they technically do (principally) the identical factor: add extra ports and connectors to your laptop. Nonetheless, there are some slight variations and it is value understanding them before you purchase one.
USB hubs are smaller, cheaper dongles that may add additional USB ports, SD card readers, show outputs, or a headphone jack. These usually do not provide additional energy, so that you could be unable to cost devices plugged into them. They’re additionally moveable sufficient to throw in your laptop computer bag to make use of at residence and on the go.
USB docks are sometimes bigger, costlier, and are designed to spend most of their time in your desk. They usually include their very own energy provide, to allow them to cost different gadgets, and have a number of monitor outputs and Ethernet connections. In the event you continuously use your laptop computer at a desk, a dock can allow you to rapidly join it to a keyboard, mouse, displays, and every other peripherals you want concurrently.