by Craig Lloyd on
If you’re ready to move on from subpar coffee in the morning and want to start making a worthwhile delicious cup of joe, here’s some coffee gear that will help get you started.
With Chromebooks getting thinner and thinner, most of the port selection is narrowing down to just USB-C ports. Thankfully, these aren’t restricted in any way, and you can plug in your current accessories with one of these great hubs!
One issue with USB-C ports on Windows laptops is that manufacturers may not allow for all of the capabilities. You could see USB-C included for data transfer, but the laptop will require a proprietary connector for charging and HDMI for video-out. It’s frustrating, and it makes buying a USB-C hub for a Windows laptop that much more work.
Fortunately, Chromebooks don’t have that problem. Google has a hand in developing the motherboard that goes inside each Chromebook and Chromebox, mainly to make it easier to provide seamless updates. The other benefit is if you see a USB-C port on a Chromebook, know that it works for charging, display-out, and 5Gbps data transfer.
I’ve used all of these USB-C hubs with a Chromebook at some point in the last two years, so I know first hand that they’ll work for you!
This hub is great to stash in your bag, just in case you need to connect a USB-A thumb drive, two-factor authentication key, or whatever else. You don’t get power passthrough or display-out with this hub, so look at the other options if those are important to you.
You get four USB-A ports, perfect for connecting your existing accessories. That may be a bit overkill for most uses, but it’s better to have too many ports on your hub than not enough. And with the low price and compact design, this one is perfect to keep in your bag so you always have it handy. This hub comes in black or space gray, though the latter is $5 extra.
Whether you keep this in your bag or at your desk, this little hub is a great companion for your Chromebook.
You get 60W of passthrough charging, more than fast enough to charge your Chromebook at full speed. The HDMI port is perfect for letting you work on a second screen, or plugging into a TV for movie night. It outputs at 4K/30Hz, a perfect match for your high-res monitor. The single USB-A port is perfect for thumb drives, or wireless keyboards and mice with a single receiver. This hub comes in gray, silver, and rose gold, all for the same price.
AUKEY has another great hub, this time with even more expandability. Despite the extra ports, this one is still easy to keep packed in your briefcase.
Like AUKEY’s other adapter, you get four USB-A port for your current accessories. This one adds in passthrough power delivery, good for 60W of juice. Chromebooks don’t charge any faster than 45W, so this hub won’t bottleneck your power. You also get a 4K/30Hz HDMI port to output to any display, perfect for presentations. This hub is only available in black.
This hub is great if you need a little bit of everything. Yeah, you can always daisy chain a USB-A Ethernet adapter onto another hub, but it’s great to have it built-in—less to fuss with, less to carry.
Besides that Ethernet port, you get up to 100W of power passthrough. That’s more than overkill for your Chromebook, but it may give the hub extra life if you get a more power-hungry laptop later on. Meanwhile, you still get a 4K/30Hz HDMI port to get your apps onto the big screen, and three USB-A ports for keyboards, mice and whatever else you may want to use.
This hub is available in gray, silver, and space grey, all for the same price. If you don’t need an Ethernet jack, HooToo sells a cheaper version that swaps that port for a full-size SD card slot for $40.
If you want something permanently attached to your desk, Plugable has the dock for you. It costs a pretty penny, but it offers more expansion than anything else on this list.
You get three USB-A 3.0 ports and separate mic and audio-out jacks on the front, so you have easy access to those through your workday. Around back you get one Gigabit Ethernet jack, a USB-C port to connect your Chromebook, one 4K/30hz HDMI port, and two USB-A 2.0 ports for connecting mice, keyboards, and other permanent accessories. An included power supply not only provides juice to your peripherals, it’s also a 60W charger for your Chromebook.
Last but not least, this dock can be placed vertically or horizontally, with a stand included if you want to keep it upright. The Plugable USB-C Dock is only available in black.
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