By PowerBuy // 12 February 2013 // Related Categories:

First off, what is a docking station?
Consider a docking station as a bridge between your laptop and accessories. It is a clever piece of equipment that connects your laptop to multiple devices, leaving only one cable to plug into your laptop.

You can connect devices to your docking station such as your printer, scanner, mouse, keyboard or any other gadget that you would usually have to find a port for on your laptop.

Why would you use one?

  • It’s simple and you don’t run out of ports
    Your accessories are already connected to your docking station so you don’t have to plug them in individually every time you bring your laptop back to your desk.
  • You won’t run out of ports

These days most laptops have a maximum of three USB ports (some only have two) but with a docking station you don’t have to worry about running out of USB connections. Thanks to docking stations you no longer need to rely on a desktop PC to get all of the ports you need.

  • Connect a second or third monitor
    Docking stations are now available with the ability to connect multiple monitors which you previously might not have been able to do.
  • Portability between locations or “hot-desking”
    Docking stations are great when many staff members may share the same desk (known as “hot desks”). If your staff use different laptop models then look for a docking station that has universal connections.

What to look for in a docking station?
Docking stations come with various connections and features. Here are some of the more popular options:

  • Inbuilt power adapter - providing power to the laptop without needing to buy a spare
  • USB Hub – so you can leave your essential devices (mouse, keyboard etc) connected
  • Network - connect your wired network (Ethernet) cable
  • Video output - some docks give you the ability to connect 1-2 additional monitors
  • Mic/Speaker port – so you can leave your speakers or headset connected and neatly out of the way

Have you used a docking station before? If so, do you have any feedback for our readers?

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