Review of the Anker 551 USB-C Hub (8-in-1, Tablet Stand)

The Anker 551 USB-C Hub is a highly versatile and remarkably well-designed accessory that bridges the gap between mobile and desktop productivity. With its 8-in-1 functionality and tablet stand, it goes a step further by transforming your iPad or USB-C tablet into a full-scale workstation.

Design and Build

The Anker 551 distinguishes itself with its compact and ergonomic design. Despite boasting a high number of ports, it manages to retain a sleek form-factor that can conveniently fit into a small bag. Its foldable stand is a practical feature that facilitates easy storage and transportation. The stand’s adjustable angle ensures an ergonomic and comfortable workspace, making it ideal for extended working hours.

Although the Anker 551 weighs 650 grams, which might not make it the lightest accessory, its weight is justified considering its multifunctional capabilities. The hub, also referred to as the ‘tablet stand,’ is crafted from an aluminum alloy, lending it a robust and high-quality feel. The surface is coated with non-slip silicon, which minimizes the risk of the tablet slipping or falling, enhancing the overall user experience. Its weightiness implies a sturdy build and the use of quality materials.

The bottom of the stand is rubber-coated, ensuring your iPad remains secure and snug. This feature prevents any movement or scratching noises, further enhancing the user experience.

Connectivity and Performance

Featuring a robust aluminum alloy construction, the Anker 551 USB-C Hub 8-in-1 Tablet Stand offers durability and reliability. Its tablet holder is equipped with a non-slip silicone surface, minimizing the risk of accidental slips. The stand’s ergonomic design enhances the user experience by providing a comfortable tactile feel.

What sets this tablet stand apart is its impressive eight-in-one functionality. Let’s explore its extensive connectivity options in detail. Positioned on the right side of the base, you’ll find a microSD card slot and a full-size SD card slot capable of supporting speeds up to 100 megabits per second. Moreover, there’s an additional USB-C port for connecting your iPad to a dock using the provided cable. At the back, you’ll discover a USB-C power delivery port, accommodating up to 100 watts of power for convenient iPad charging. Furthermore, an HDMI 2.0 port is available, enabling 4K 60Hz output when connected to an external display. On the left side of the base, a 3.5mm headphone jack provides seamless audio connectivity. Additionally, there are two USB-A data ports with a maximum speed of 5 gigabits per second. It’s important to note that these USB ports are not designed for charging purposes. To ensure a secure and noise-free grip on your iPad, the bottom of the stand is coated with rubber.

The Anker 551 truly shines with its versatile range of connectivity options. Equipped with a USB-C Power Delivery input port, a 4K HDMI port, two USB-A data ports, a 3.5mm AUX port, and microSD/SD card slots, you’ll always have multiple ways to connect your peripherals. Seamlessly transfer files with ease using the USB-A ports and microSD/SD card slots. The 4K HDMI port allows you to effortlessly connect to an external display with up to 4K@60Hz resolution, making it an exceptional feature for designers and visual creators.

Additionally, the Anker 551 supports pass-through charging, enabling you to power your tablet while connected. Simply utilize a 45W-100W USB-C charger to ensure your tablet remains charged during critical moments. It’s worth mentioning that the charger is not included, which can be disappointing considering the price range of this product.

User Experience and Compatibility

The Anker 551 boasts a remarkable feature, as it is fully compatible with iPadOS 16.2 Stage Manager, enabling independent tasks on both your iPad screen and an external monitor. This exceptional compatibility makes it an incredibly versatile tool for enhancing productivity.

In practical usage scenarios, the Anker 551 Hub proved to be highly advantageous. The USB-A port facilitated effortless video editing directly from an SSD, alleviating concerns about the iPad’s battery life, thanks to the power delivery port.

Furthermore, the Anker 551 offers exceptional flexibility, allowing you to use it either as a stand or in conjunction with the iPad’s cover case stand, depending on your specific needs. While the power adapter is not included, the productivity boost provided by this hub more than compensates for this minor inconvenience.

The device features two hinges, providing you with the freedom to adjust the height and angle of your iPad for optimal comfort. The lower hinge offers an impressive 70-degree range, while the top hinge allows for a full 180-degree rotation. Both hinges are sturdy, ensuring your tablet remains securely in place, offering a stable and reliable user experience.

Customer Service

The Anker 551 comes with an 18-month worry-free warranty and friendly customer service. While the warranty period is a comforting assurance, having a 24-month warranty would have been even more assuring.

Overall, the Anker 551 USB-C Hub is an excellent accessory for turning your tablet into a more powerful work tool. If you’re looking to upgrade your work-from-home setup or simply need a reliable and high-performance hub for your tablet, the Anker 551 USB-C Hub could be the ideal choice for you. Remember, for the best performance, use a charger with an output of at least 20W.

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