(TS) – Kanex on Thursday introduced its new DualRole device at Macworld/iWorld. The DualRole is a hub that provides three USB 3.0 ports and a gigabit ethernet adapter.
In my hands-on time with the DualRole, I noted appreciatively that it includes a pigtail USB 3.0 connector built in; finding the correct cable to connect a hub might prove frustrating when most of your cable inventory is USB 2.0. That 3-inch cable tucks into the side of the compact gray and white unit (about three-fourths the length of an iPhone 5, and about twice as thick) when not in use.
The three expansion USB ports are all on one of the long sides, with a fair amount of space between them to accomodate wider flash drives or other peripherals. There’s a 5V power input for an optional AC adapter (not included with the hub), but I was able to power a standard 4GB flash drive and a LaCie rugged USB 3.0 hard drive simultaneously off the hub without external power and with no problems.
While the USB ports on the hub are entirely plug and play, the Gigabit Ethernet port isn’t quite configuration-free. Using the port requires a quick driver install and a reboot on either OS X or Windows; the driver is downloadable from Kanex’s product page for the DualRole. Once I installed the driver, the Ethernet adapter showed up immediately in the Network preference pane.
The DualRole is available now from Kanex’s online store for US$69.00. If you’re looking for a USB 3.0 hub that’s easy to pack and adds networking savvy on the side, it’s a find.
Kanex is a leader of innovative Apple and iOS connectivity solutions for homes and businesses worldwide. Kanex is dedicated to advancing technology by investing in tomorrow’s future. Leveraging its deep-rooted commitment to the consumer electronics industry, Kanex continues to design and develop products that fit the individual, the house, the business and the environment. More information can be found on the web at www.kanexlive.com.
Tags: 3-Port USB 3.0 Hub, Gigabit Ethernet, Kanex DualRole
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