I’m still not to the point where I can use my iPad Pro as a full-fledged laptop replacement, but products such as HYPER’s $89.99 HyperDrive 6-in-1 USB-C Hub edge me closer.
One of the complaints among the “I want the iPad Pro to be my laptop” crowd is the Apple tablet’s lack of connectivity. However, by attaching the HyperDrive 6-in-1 USB-C Hub you “transform” the single iPad Pro USB-C port into six ports: HDMI, 3.5mm audio jack, SD, micro SD, USB-A 3.0 and USB-C power delivery, freeing yourself from sprawling dongle hell.
The HDMI port in the HyperDrive is capable of 4K video at 30Hz, or 2K at 60Hz. The USB-A port in the HyperDrive allows an external keyboard to be plugged in if you wish.
You can connect USB storage to import photos and videos, but, alas, you can’t attach and use an external hard drive as you can with a Mac (though — who knows? — perhaps Apple will open up Files app support for USB storage with the upcoming iOS 13.) You can also connect hardware keyboards, MIDI audio devices, microphone, cameras, Ethernet adapters, etc. via USB-A.
Note that the USB-C port in the HyperDrive allows the iPad Pro to charge while using other accessories. It transfers power at around 18W even though the tablet can receive power at up to 30W. That’s not a deal breaker, but a limitation you should be aware of.
The compact HyperDrive plug-in adapter features a patent-pending, removable, and replaceable brace that connects the USB-C hub to the tablet, while not affecting the connectivity of the Apple Smart Keyboard Folio. It’s made of a soft polycarbonate and ABS material that the folks at HYPER say securely holds the USB-C hub in place without scratching the iPad Pro’s surface. I can’t attest to the long-term affects, but, after a week of use, so far, so good.
Designed specifically for the 2018 iPad Pro 2018, the HYPER device comes in the same space grey and silver aluminum colors as the Apple tablet, so is a good aesthetic match.
The HyperDrive iPad Pro 6-in-1 USB-C Hub is a must-have accessory that makes the good iPad Pro even better — even if doesn’t “laptop-ize” the tablet, at least for me.
But with iOS 13 set to be previewed next week, that could change….
Apple World Today Rating (out of 5 stars): ★★★★★