USB Hubs – Connecting Peripherals to Computers and Laptops
Laptops are losing weight with thinner ones getting more traction than the earlier bulky ones. Although this transformation is accompanied by faster processors and higher-quality displays, they are losing out on the number of USB ports. Today, most laptops come with a couple of USB-B ports and a USB-C port. Some high-end products feature an HDMI or a mini HDMI port as well. However, if you want to use a mouse, attach an external hard drive, and charge your phone through the laptop’s USB port, you can’t do all three simultaneously.
Don’t fret. Lack of USB ports doesn’t mean you have run out of all the options. You can extend this connectivity capability by using a USB hub. A hub is an external network hardware that converts one of your laptop’s USB ports into multiple ports. This allows you to connect various devices depending on the hub and the ports you choose. This article takes you through some top options so you can choose the best USB hub in India. But before that let’s learn about a few factors you should consider before making a purchase.
Before You Buy a USB Hub – Know How to Make the Best Choice
Number of Ports
The first step to buying the right USB hub is evaluating how many extra ports you need. If you need 2 extra ports, go for a hub with 3-4 ports that keeps a couple free for any unexpected requirements. Look for bigger hubs if you need to use more ports simultaneously. Moreover, you should also check for the type of ports you need, as some hubs carry card slots and HDMI ports in addition to USB-B ports as well.
After the number of ports, comes the section where you should check the power your peripherals or devices need. For instance, if a device requires more than 500mA power to operate/charge and the hub offers less output, it won’t be useful. If your devices need minimal power, you can go for a hub that uses the USB port as its power source. For higher power needs, you should consider the ones with external power sources.
Currently, USB 3.0 devices are in demand for the higher transfer speeds they offer. But these come with higher price tags as well. You can also get hubs with USB 2.0 connectivity if you are looking for less pricey options but you won’t get that speed. So, it’s up to your specific requirements and budget to choose the right USB version.
Another essential factor you should never skip while buying a USB hub is its build quality. Those with good build quality are safer and last longer while easily handling normal wear and tear. Again, going higher on the quality scale also increases the cost of the hub. And compromising on quality for a lower-priced product won’t be an option as you don’t want to spend money buying a hub again and again.
If you are planning to use an external hard drive regularly, data transfer speed is a vital factor. Usually, you can find hubs offering a maximum of 5 Gbps transfer rate. But if data transfer is not on your to-do list, you can go for those with lower transfer rates to save some money.
Power surges come unexpectedly and can damage electronic devices. That’s something today’s tech-savvy generation knows very well. But do you know your USB port can also produce an abrupt surge damaging the connected peripherals? Here, using a hub with a surge protection feature can help prevent any damage. A small amount spent extra on such a feature is worthy when those highly-priced peripherals like mobile phones and printers are at stake.
Even if you are being too careful, your electronic devices are likely to get some damage. This could be due to some manufacturing defect, chances of which are less when you buy from reputed brands. In several cases of damage to the hub, getting coverage will prevent the loss of your investment. Do check for the warranty offered, related terms and conditions, and duration before paying the price.
Top 10 USB Hubs to Buy in India
Now, when you know the fundamentals of buying the right USB hub, here are some top options you can consider ordering online.
Quantum QHM6633 4-Port Hi-Speed USB Hub
Quantum has earned quite a reputation in the accessories market with numerous products being bought and used. This high-speed USB hub is another useful product from the brand. The first point that makes it a worthy addition to the list is its durable build quality and design, allowing ease of use for a long time. The hub comes with four USB 2.0 ports, which means you get three extra ports for connecting peripherals to your laptop or desktop.
The hub is compatible with Mac, Linux and Windows operating systems. There’s a long list of devices you can attach through it such as hard drives, cameras, printers, scanners, keyboards, phones and webcams. Another feature of the hub is its plug-and-play functionality. Interested in Quantum QHM6633 4-Port Hub? It also offers you a 480 Mbps data transfer rate, and you can buy it online from Amazon for ₹ 269.00 only.
iBall Lappie Piano 423 USB Hub
Next is a compact-sized USB hub from iBall that attracts your eyes towards its stylish design and glossy touch. This hub also comes with four ports but providing one at the top and three on the side makes it compact and easy to carry. The iBall Lappie Piano 423 Hub is considered a great choice for using with laptops. The user-friendly design offers a high-speed data transfer at the rate of 480 Mbps. It also allows multi-tasking as all the ports can be used simultaneously.
This one’s also a plug-and-play device. A rubber pad at the bottom for extra stability and sturdy ports make it a worthy pick despite the missing LED indicator. You can add this hub to your laptop’s accessories panel by paying ₹ 555.00 on Amazon.
Quantum QHM6642 4-Port Hi-Speed USB Hub
Another one from Quantum, the QHM6642 is a truly portable and compact USB hub. It also offers four ports for connecting your peripherals but in a much smaller size. Under the hood of this stylish, sleek design are premium quality components. On the outside, it offers a sturdy case. Overall, the build quality offers a safe and secure performance along with durability for the long term.
Moreover, it offers a wonderful performance with a transfer speed of up to 480 Mbps and is compatible with all the operating systems. An interesting feature of this plug-and-play USB hub is that it supports connecting up to 127 devices in a chained series. The QHM6642 with a user-friendly, ergonomic design is covered by a warranty for 1 year. Buy it online from Amazon to extend your computer’s connectivity options by paying just ₹ 292.00.
Amkette 4-Port Superspeed USB 3.0 Hub with Charging Function
This hub from Amkette is a go-get-it thing if you are looking for a sleek product with high transfer speed that it offers through USB 3.0. The primary feature of this hub is the transfer speed of up to 5 Gbps. It is touted to work 10 times faster than a regular USB 2.0 hub. This means it will take a few seconds to move a full HD movie between the connected peripherals. Moreover, the MTT technology under the hood ensures each port gets a fair share of speed, 12 Mbps for each.
The device carries a durable build quality and a sleek design. A built-in fuse is an extra safety feature added to the hub. It protects the hub and connected devices from power fluctuations. Buy the Amkette Superspeed USB 3.0 Hub from Amazon for ₹ 899.00 and get it delivered to your place with a hassle-free 1-year warranty.
Zinq Technologies ZQ4H Hi-Speed 4-Port Ultra Slim USB Hub
Get ready for multi-tasking with multiple USB devices connected to your computer or laptop with Zinq’s ZQ4H Hi-Speed 4-Port Hub. The plug-and-play device comes in a sleek design and allows you to connect a wide range of devices to your system. You can use the hub to connect a mass storage device, keyboard, mouse, printer, cooling pad, and DVD burner. Besides, it also allows connecting gaming consoles like Xbox and PS4 among other devices.
Another interesting feature of the hub is automatic connection and speed detection. Zinq ZQ4H is compatible with almost every operating system including Windows, Linux and Mac. The hub features USB 3.0 ports for high data transfer speeds and is covered under a warranty for one year. Interested in buying this USB hub? Get it from Amazon for ₹ 248.00 only.
Belkin USB-C Multimedia Hub
Have you ever wondered what those USB-C ports on new-age laptops are for? Here’s the answer. Belkin’s multimedia hub comes with a USB-C cable for connecting to your laptop or computer. Thus, you get to extend the ports without blocking any USB 2.0 or 3.0 ports on your system. And Belkin has created this all-in-one solution to offer you much more than what you will get from a regular hub.
This multimedia hub has 3 USB ports, 1 SD card slot, 1 ethernet port, and 1 HDMI port. Weighing just 180 gm, it offers a high-speed data transfer rate of up to 5 Gbps. And the 60W pass-through charging feature lets you charge your devices while using them connected to your laptop. All these features along with a beautiful design do impact the price tag. The Belkin USB-C Multimedia Hub is available on Amazon for ₹ 7,399.00.
Rts Hi-Speed USB 3.0 4-Port Hub
If you are looking for something that fits comfortably in a pocket, this USB 3.0 hub from Rts is a great pick. While the strip design makes it a compact device, four USB 3.0 ports let you multitask efficiently. Moreover, you get a 12-inch flexible cable to attach the hub to your system. This means you can easily connect your computer or laptop to peripheral devices placed at a distance.
The easy-to-use and simple hub is compatible with a wide range of devices including smartphones, storage drives, gaming consoles, and digital cameras, among others. Get this compact yet superspeed USB hub by Rts (Radhe Techno Services) from Amazon for ₹ 748.00.
Anker Data Hub A7516011 4-Port USB Charger
Another beautiful addition to this list, Anker’s USB hub is a wonderful product to expand your computer system’s port count. The four ports that it adds are of the USB 3.0 version, this means you get a transfer speed of up to 5 Gbps. The device is compatible with Mac OS X 10.2, Windows Vista, and their higher versions. You can use the ultra-slim USB hub to charge your mobile phone and connect other peripherals for work simultaneously.
Ultra-slim design and extra durability are other features of this hub. If you are interested in adding this to your kitty, buy it from Amazon for ₹ 1,599.00. Not to forget, you will get a warranty coverage for 18 months with this device.
Portronics POR 696 Mport 34 M USB 3.0 Hub
Durable, sturdy, and compact, the Portronics POR 696 allows you to charge and sync devices simultaneously through USB 3.0 ports. While it's touted to be a great product for MacBook users, it comes with USB-C connectivity and can be used with any system having that port. It comes with a portable design that makes it easy to carry in a bag or pocket. A thick cable, flexibility, and durable construction make it last longer than an average hub. The Portronics POR 696 USB 3.0 Hub also offers a power output of 1.0A and is available on Amazon for ₹ 798.00.
PiBOX India USB C To HDMI Adapter Aluminium Type C USB Hub 3.1
The use of an aluminium alloy makes this USB hub stand apart from the rest. While the aluminium exterior adds the heat resistance feature, it isn’t the only thing you will buy it for. The hub comes with a USB 3.1 cable and offers three ports for connectivity, including a USB 3.0 port, a 4K HDMI port and a USB-C port. Thus, you can connect a device for up to 5 Gbps data transfer, watch a movie through the HDMI connectivity, and charge a USB 3.0 device simultaneously using this hub. The beautiful hub is also made durable to last long and comes with a 15-month warranty coverage. You can get this amazing device from Amazon for ₹ 899.00.
Bonus Tip: Powered vs Unpowered – Which One's Better?
A powered USB hub, also known as self-powered, needs an external power source for operating. It allows you to use devices that require high input power such as tablets and hard drives. You can also charge your smartphone or another device through the hub without putting pressure on the laptop’s battery.
On the other hand, an unpowered USB hub draws its power for operation from the device it is connected to. Since these don’t need an inbuilt AC adapter, they come in smaller, compact sizes and designs. Moreover, these hubs also carry lower price tags. But the drawback is you can’t use them to connect high-powered devices.
So, if you need to use high-powered devices, you should get a powered hub but if you are looking to expand ports for low-powered devices like a mouse, keyboard, etc., an unpowered hub is a great choice.
Evaluate Your Requirements Carefully Before Buying a USB Hub
It is important to evaluate your requirements carefully before buying a USB Hub. It should not happen that you end up buying a USB hub that has a lesser number of ports than the peripherals you plan to connect, or buying an unpowered USB hub when you actually needed a powered one. We hope this BP Guide would have helped you understand which are the best USB hubs currently available in India and the important factors to keep in mind when buying one. Stay connected with us for more engaging content.