Are you looking to turn your Chromebook into a productivity powerhouse? Check out these USB-C hubs!
Chromebooks are great for simple productivity on the go, but when you get home, it’s nice to move to a larger setup. A bigger screen, a nice mechanical keyboard, a proper webcam, and so on. Yeah, you can plug things in individually, but a USB-C hub means you just need to plug one cable into your Chromebook and all your accessories connect. Newer Chromebooks like the Pixelbook only feature USB-C ports, so you’ll need adaptors to use most accessories.
These are the best USB-C hubs for your Chromebook!
A word on compatibility
Google helps manufacturers design all of the motherboards inside every Chromebook and Chromebox, and builds all of the necessary drivers into Chrome OS This is why Google can send an update to every Chrome device every six weeks for years on end, and it also means if an accessory works with one Chromebook, it works with all of them. And if you see a USB-C port on a Chromebook, know that it supports charging, video out and data transfer. All of these hubs have been used by a member of the Android Central team with their personal Chromebooks.
- ARKTEK USB-C Hub
- AUKEY USB-C Hub
- HooToo USB-C Hub
- QacQoc 8-in-1 hub
- Dell WD15 Monitor Dock
- Plugable USB-C Triple Display Docking Station
ARKTEK USB-C Hub
If you just need a display out and charging port and don’t want to spend too much money, ARKTEK has you covered. They offer a basic hub with a USB-C port for passthrough charging, HDMI port, and either one or two USB-A 3.0 ports. I’ve had this hub in my bag for about a year now, since it’s so compact and easy to carry around. The HDMI port will output at up to 4K at 30hz with a compatible HDMI cable and monitor. The lightweight nature of this hub means it’ll slide around on your desk and potentially scratch things, so consider some double-sided tape to keep things in place.
The ARKTEK USB-C Hub costs $16 for one USB-A ports, or $22 for two USB-A ports.
AUKEY USB-C Hub
Stepping up in price and selection is this hub from AUKEY. It offers a USB-C port for passthrough charging, one HDMI port, three USB-A 3.0 ports, one microSD card slot and one full-sized SD card slot. The HDMI port can output at 4K at 30hz with a compatible HDMI cable and monitor, and this hub is still light enough to live in your bag if you want to carry it around. That light weight means it’ll slide around a bit, even with the rubberized grips on the bottom of the hub.
The AUKEY USB-C Hub is available for $40.
HooToo USB-C Hub
This HooToo hub is a bit more expensive than the AUKEY one, but depending on the layout of your desk it may be a better fit. It offers three USB-A 3.0 ports, a USB-C port for passthrough charging, and an HDMI port that can output at 4K at 30hz. There’s also a full-sized SD card slot, but this one is much faster than the one on the AUKEY model: it transfers at 5 Gbps instead of 480 Mbps. This is another lightweight hub, perfect for throwing in a bag or sliding across your desk.
The HooToo USB-C Hub is available for $48.
QacQoc 8-in-1 hub
The last truly portable hub is more expensive than the others, but offers more ports. You get a gigabit Ethernet port, a USB-C port for passthrough charging, a microSD slot, a full-sized SD card slot, three USB-A 3.0 ports, and an HDMI port that can output at 4K at 30hz. This hub also includes a pouch for travel, and is available in a variety of colors to best match your Chromebook.
The QacQoc 8-in-1 hub is available in gray with white, gold, silver, rose gold, and gray with black.
Dell WD15 Monitor Dock
This will be overkill for most users, but indispensable if you have a lot of accessories. There are three display output options — HDMI, Mini DisplayPort and VGA — though you can only use two of these with a Chromebook. You also get three USB-A 3.0 ports — two on the front of the dock for easy access — and two USB-A 2.0 ports, an Ethernet jack, and a combination headphone/microphone jack on the front for easy access. The hub itself uses a proprietary charger, since the hub may need more power than USB-C can provide. Your Chromebook connects and can charge with a single USB-C cable.
The Dell WD15 Monitor Dock is available for $136.
Plugable USB-C Triple Display Docking Station
This is another super expensive option for power users. It features two HDMI outputs and one DVI outputs, though you can only use two of these with a Chromebook. Also on the back are gigabit Ethernet, three USB-A 2.0 ports, the USB-C port to charge and connect to your Chromebook, and the proprietary power port for the dock itself. On the front, you get another USB-A port, this time at 3.0 speeds, separate headphone and microphone jacks, and a USB-C 3.0 port. This dock may be a bit overkill for most Chromebooks users, but if you have a lot of accessories it’ll be well worth the money.
The Plugable USB-C Triple Display Docking Station is available for $180.
What say you?
Which USB-C hub do you use with your Chromebook? Share them with us below!
June 23, 2018 at 07:00AM