USB Ports are becoming more and more important port to connect or charge other devices. Technically on one USB port you can install almost unimaginable number of devices. But, quite obviously one USB port can never be used to add 5 devices at the same time. Moreover, the number of USB ports are few in Laptops, some times a bigger base USB device practically covers the neighborhood USB port partially making two physical USB ports unusable. Here is where an USB Hub can work nicely.
What is an USB Hub
USB Hub is nothing but like our household multi-plug used for increasing the number of female plugs. I honestly do not know who named these as male and female ends, the person was very naughty, there is no doubt about it. In case of Electricity, the method is very easy as there is no question of data transfer. But in case of USB Hub, the magnified number of female USB Slots should work as a separate port individually so that the male USB ports can accessed properly by the computer.
USB Hub can draw power from the bus itself or powered by a separate power supply. Self-powered USB hub has the advantage that each of them can connected equipment up to 500 mA. In bus-powered USB hub which has no external power supply can supply up to 500 mA calculating all the extended ports in downstream. Basically there is a circuit inside any USB Hub that does the work of recognition of these separate increased number of ports individually.
There is no meaning of talking about how an USB Hub works, because we want to focus on practical usage of tan USB Hub.
Types of USB Hub
Apart from Self-powered USB hub and bus-powered USB hub (mostly used), USB hub can be divided in this way :
- Based on Technology : There are USB 2.0 Hub, USB 3.0 Hub and USB CardBus.
- Based on Design : with flexible cords and with a rigid box.
Which USB Hub to Buy
Flexible one is better as the rigid USB Hub is again creating the basic problem – when a bigger base USB device practically covers the neighborhood USB port partially making two physical USB ports unusable. Buy USB Hub from a good brand, there is chance of simple short circuit with cheaper ones. Short Circuit can make the motherboard dead. The first sign of such event is freezing of the connected devices through the USB hub. Disconnect it properly and gift that to the shop owner. Most has no Standardization, so using an USB hub needs a bit monitoring. Also attaching too many devices to charge them at the same time can harm the power supply of the laptop or desktop.
Funny USB Hubs
There are funny toys which double ups as a USB hub like Traffic light, Coffee cup warmer and hundreds of possible odd things. Depending on the manufacturer’s quality, these can be harmful to the motherboard itself. It is better to use those toys separately and a dedicated USB hub for real work.