$99 HyperDrive USB-C hub spotlight’s potential for Apple’s new iPad Pro models

“With a chunk of electronics fitted to the side of my iPad Pro, I have glimpsed the future of computing,” Stephen Shankland writes for CNET. “I’ve been putting Sanho’s HyperDrive USB-C Hub for the 2018 iPad Pro through its paces, trying this six-port dock that plugs into the USB-C port in Apple’s newest iPad Pro models.”

“And it works. The $99 dongle transformed my iPad Pro suddenly into something a lot more like a traditional laptop,” Shankland writes. “It takes as much advantage of the USB-C port as Apple allows, letting you plug in 3.5mm audio devices, HDMI monitors and TVs, regular and micro SD memory cards, your charger and other USB-C devices, and accessories like Ethernet adapters that use the old-style rectangular USB-A connector that’s been a fixture on laptops for decades.”

“The hub’s top feature is letting people use nice headphones or speakers connected with the 3.5mm jack while keeping the iPad plugged into power, Sanho Chief Executive Daniel Chin said,” Shankland writes. “‘With our dock, you can listen to your music and charge your iPad Pro at the same. You can’t do that with any of Apple’s adapters,” he said.”

“I’m hoping iOS will gradually unlock other USB-C abilities. Storage would be nice, so I could plug in external hard drives or flash-memory thumb drives, but I’ve mostly moved to wireless file transfer with cloud services like Dropbox,” Shankland writes. “The bigger shortcoming in my eyes is the inability to use a mouse or trackpad.”

Read more in the full review here.

MacDailyNews Take: If you want a mouse, get a Mac.

We find that there are many older users longing to make iPad work like a laptop, because that’s what they know.

Take a look at a twelve-year-old who’s only really ever used an iPad for personal computing. It’s an eyeopener. It’s like looking into the future.

The answer isn’t to try to make the iPad into a MacBook. The answer is to provide all the tools possible in iOS for developers to make robust apps that can take advantage of the multi-touch paradigm. — MacDailyNews, May 16, 2017

If you want a trackpad for your iPad, you already have one:

Hold your finger down anywhere on the iOS keyboard to access the trackpad feature for precise cursor control. To select text, simply place your cursor in your desired position, then use a second finger to tap the screen and the text selection tool will appear for use.

Using USB-C on Apple’s new iPad Pro – November 28, 2018


  1. Like I’ve been saying for the last 2 GD years, Apple needs a hybrid laptop/tablet to compete with Surface. So frustrated! Give us an iPad Pro/MacBook Air combo. WTF!!!

  2. I bought a similar device from Anker (very nice, FWIW) for my recently purchased 12” MacBook and it’s very handy when necessary. Just for the heck of it I purchased one of theHyperdrives for my new 11” iPad Pro. I think it’ll be handy because I do use the HDMI out feature as well as importing images (only to Photos app 😤). The audio jack will also be handy to use as well. I purchased it through the Kickstarter campaign ‘cause it seemed like a good product that addresses the iPad Pro’s (and 12” MacBook) shortcomings. I can get all of the functions when I need them and the portability of the iPad 95% of the time. Yeah, it’s an iPad dongle, but… 😉

    1. Months ago I purchased several Lention C68 USB-C Multiple Hubs with 4K HDMI/2 USB 3.0/SD Card Reader/Type C Charging/Gigabit Ethernet Adapter in space gray for myself and my daughters. They were around $65, as I recall, and included almost all of the ports that I was seeking. I would have liked a mini-DisplayPort, as well, but I could not find the MDP with HDMI and GigE and USB-A on a reasonable priced adapter. I have a separate dongle for MDP, if I need it.

      Anyway, the Lention USB-C adapter has worked well so far. I have used everything but the card reader slot.

  3. As others have pointed out, other existing USB hubs work with the iPad Pro—you don’t have to get this one specific model. I’ve used an Anker with moderate success to get video out. But it worked better with a USB-C to HDMI cable.

  4. My first Mac (a PowerBook) came with an iPod – with a huge 5 GB HD IIRC. Basic USB connection and it was simple to open files and use the iPod as an external drive.

    I can understand the problem Apple faces with an iPad or iPhone in terms of security. Without that concern the iOS devices could explode in terms of being a “desktop replacement”.

  5. MDN, let the 12 year age a little to the point their arm gets tired reaching for the screen all the time.
    Some us would like a trackpad – iOS even has trackpad mode FCOL!

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